Over 250 students participate in ninth IEC Cup

The 2018 IEC Cup was played last week at Blacktown International Sportspark, with over 250 students from Intensive English Centres across Sydney participating.

In it’s ninth year, the IEC Cup saw teenage boys and girls play in an AFL 9s round-robin tournament following their 4-6 week ‘Introduction to AFL’ courses held at each centre as run by AFL NSW/ACT.

One of the main aims of the IEC Cup is to put the AFL skills learned during these courses into practice – as well as to get the students together to join in on the fun.

Seeing the transition of these players who take part in the IEC Cup into local clubs, is also a large benefit. Former IEC Cup participants have also made their way into the AFL NSW/ACT Diversity Program, as well as onto the state All Nations squad.

AFL NSW/ACT Multicultural Programs Manager, Nickie Flambouras said that AFL NSW/ACT are thrilled to be able to offer such programs to the students.

“Being able to deliver quality programs and provide quality experiences to new and emerging migrants who come to Australia is a great pleasure for our business,” said Flambouras.

“The more players of diverse backgrounds who can partake in our sport, the better our sport will be for it.

“Our sport prides itself of giving people opportunities to learn our game and/or become fans of the AFL. Our focus is on promoting the benefits of regular exercise and using sports to help people connect with their local community.”

Miller IEC took out the Senior Boys Grand Final, defeating a strong Holroyd IEC by ten points. Bankstown IEC won the Senior Girls competition over Miller IEC by one goal, and in the Junior Boys competition, Lurnea IEC beat out Evans IEC by 11 points.

Andrew Elchah, an IEC teacher at Bankstown Senior College says that the IEC Cup has provided his students an opportunity to interact with other students from different areas, students that they would not normally come into contact with.

“The students are apprehensive at first about trying a new game but after the ball bounces the competitive nature of all the students comes out and they all have a lot of fun.

“Personally, I love seeing the students at school the day after. Sometimes they are carrying injuries or have a little limp, but once some of the staff and students start congratulating them, their smiles go from ear to ear and they walk around with a well-earned strut.

“It has also opened up an avenue of freedom for some of our students. One student has already signed up with the Auburn Giants and another has committed for next year. Not to mention it has developed a few new fans of the game.”

“We have participated in the IEC Cup for the last four years, and will continue to do so as long as we are invited.”

If you would like to learn more about AFL NSW/ACT Multicultural Programs, please contact Nickie Flambouras at nickie.flambouras@afl.com.au.

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