FIL World Championships Preview: Grey Pool

(Photo Credit: Scott McCall)

The 2018 FIL World Lacrosse Championships are just a few weeks away and I know everyone in the lacrosse world is very excited. This years FIL World Championships in Netayna, Israel will feature 46 countries that will compete for a Gold medal. This is the sixth of this series previewing each of the 14 pools and today we cover the Grey Pool. 

In this pool we have some well established European teams that have a lot of young talent. We will also see a newcomer trying to break through and find the success they want to build on.

Belgium

Belgium is a team that has a lot of talent but I feel they can do more than they have in the past. The Belgians are pretty well established and they have some great young talent.

Belgium has had success in the past but they could have been better than they were. I really feel like we have yet to see the best from Belgium. That may change in Israel as they have lots of talent including Tim De Ceuster who will be the first Belgian born player to hop across the pond and play NCAA lacrosse. De Ceuster will play DII lacrosse at Mount Olive this coming season. That is a huge testament to the growth they have done domestically in Belgium.  

During the European Championships in 2016 Belgium had a decent showing. They came in 15th place after a tough loss to Latvia. That Belgian team was very young and they have grown from that and should be a lot better in Israel.

In Denver in 2014 Belgium came in 27th place overall and last in the Red Pool. Belgium ended with a record of 4-4. That was a mediocre showing that they most certainly want to improve. I have no doubt that we will see that and we could even see the best Belgian team to date. 

Czech Republic

The Czech Republic is very well established as the game seems to be doing fantastic over there. From the field game, box game, and more the game is in a very healthy state in the Czech Republic.

When people usually think about Czech players think instantly think Box. That is a fair statement but the boys over in the Czech Republic are to be just as respected in the field game as they are in the Box game. The Czech Republic has had some pretty good showings in field tournaments over the years. They finished in 10th place in the European Championships in 2016, which was the last field tournament they appeared in. That is certainly something to be respected and to build on. 

In Denver in 2014 Czech Republic finished 14th overall and 1st in the Grey Pool. This should be another good showing for the Czech Republic in Israel. They are always an interesting team that plays tough and finds can always find a way to win.

Philippines

The Philippines are a newcomer this year that should be able to put together a pretty good performance. They have done a great job of developing the game over there in the Philippines and I hope to see them have success here in Israel.

We don't know that much about this team as they haven't played in any FIL sponsored event yet. They have played in the Heritage Cup and the Philippine lacrosse tournament. They had a decent showing in both of those events. That is a good sign that we could see a few surprises in Israel from the Philippines. I really hope to see the Philippines have some success now and in the future. 

Grey Pool Schedule

Czech Republic vs Belgium - Thursday, July 12th

Philippines vs Czech Republic - Friday, July 13th

Belgium vs Philippines - Saturday, July 14th




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