14-July-2014, Denver, Colorado, USA — #28 Mike Tsiang wins a face-off vs. Argentina’s Christopher Gogolin #29 of day 5 of the 2014 FIL Men’s World Championship. Tsiang won 14-19 face-offs on the day as China edged the Argentinians 9-7. Photo: CLA
TORONTO, ONTARIO—The China Lacrosse Association (CLA) has received full membership status in the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL). According to President, Stan Cockerton, the FIL board of directors voted unanimously to approve China’s move to full status.
“The work being done in China to grow the game there has been outstanding,” said Cockerton. “They competed in the 2014 Men’s Worlds in Denver, and just recently had an excellent showing at the Men’s U19’s in Coquitlam, BC. China Lacrosse made this an easy decision for the board.”
“We are very pleased … to be able to contribute more to the FIL’s quest to get lacrosse back into the Olympics"
—Raymond Pan, CLA Director of Finance
According to Raymond Pan, CLA Director of Finance, “We are very pleased to be a full member of FIL. This recognition will greatly enhance China Lacrosse’s efforts with local and provincial governments – and other stakeholders – to grow the sport outside of Shanghai and Beijing.”
Pan continued, “We’re also excited to have a voting seat at the table for general assembly and postal votes allowing the CLA to be more involved with FIL decisions. It also puts us in a position to be able to contribute more to the FIL’s quest to get lacrosse back into the Olympics.”.
China Lacrosse’s world championship appearances began at the 2014 FIL Men’s Lacrosse World Championships in Denver, Colorado, where they defeated Uganda, another world championship newcomer, 14-7 to finish in 33rd place out of 38 teams with an overall record of 3-4.
8-July-2016, Coquitlam, BC — #3 Eric Wang (6G, 1A) prepares to deliver a shot of goal as #2 Kurtis Shum (3G, 2A) provides support. China defeated Mexico 15-3 at the 2016 FIL U19 Men’s Lacrosse World Championship. It was the inaugural U19 world championship game for both squads. Photo: CLA
China Lacrosse’s next international tournament experience came this past July at the 2016 FIL U19 Men’s Lacrosse World Championship in Coquitlam, BC. Learning from their previous international event, the CLA brought a talented, aggressive group of young men who were very competitive and earned a well-deserved 5-2 record overall. China’s U19 squad defeated Scotland, 15-9, to finish in 9th place out of 14 teams.
In fact, over the past five years, China has been working on its game at all levels competing in numerous regional and international events, including:
- 2012 Shanghai Cup
- 2013 ASPAC Tournament
- 2014 Hong Kong Open
- 2014 FIL Men’s Lacrosse World Championships
- 2015 Hong Kong Open
- 2016 Greater China Cup
- 2016 Hong Kong Open
- 2016 FIL U19 Men’s Lacrosse World Championship
- February 2017 – 2nd Annual Greater China Cup (GCC), Hong Kong
- April 2017 – Hong Kong Open, Hong Kong
- June 2017 – ASPAC Tournament, Seoul, Korea
- July 2017 – FIL Women’s Lacrosse World Cup, Guildford, England
- July 2018 – Men’s Lacrosse World Championship, Manchester, England
Organizational membership and player growth
China Lacrosse plans to focus both on geographical growth as well as vertical growth within their Shanghai/Beijing footprint. Their targets are more new cities playing lacrosse, more schools playing lacrosse in current CLA cities and more sticks in more kids hands with programs in place to train them.
Similar to what the Hong Kong Lacrosse Association is doing, China Lacrosse will work development at both the junior and high-performance coach levels. According to Raymond Pan, “We need to develop and train more coaches to help us grow the sport within the world’s largest population base.”
China Lacrosse plans to train more local referees/umpires to officiate in cross-cities tournaments as well as in local city leagues