FIL World Championships Preview: White Pool

(Photo Credit: Netherlands Lacrosse)

The 2018 FIL World Lacrosse Championships are just a few days 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 twelfth of this series previewing each of the 14 pools and today we cover the Gold Pool. 

This is another pool that was effected by Bulgaria and Haiti having to pull out of the tournament. Japan, Uganda, Bulgaria was the original White pool but Uganda was shifted over to the Olive Group and the two top tier teams of Netherlands, Norway, were shifted in to the white group. Still this will be a fun pool.


Netherlands 

The growth of lacrosse in the Netherlands has been noting short of impressive. They are constantly playing and we have seen new teams at the clubs arise as well as participation. Also, their proximity to Germany and Belgium doesn't hurt either.

The Dutch have a lot of competition around them and that has helped them grow and improve as they can play against some great talent. The Dutch had a pretty good showing in the 2016 European Championships in which they finished 7th. They had a 5-3 record as they finished with a good win over Scotland. They did have some tough games with Germany and Israel though. They also had a decent showing at the Barcelona City tournament a few weeks ago.

In Denver we saw Netherlands finish in 19th place overall and 1st in the Green Pool. It was a good showing in pool play but the Dutch had a tough time out of pool play. They finished with a 2-5 record. Their only wins came in pool play against China and Italy. They really want to have a better showing in Israel then they did in Denver and I believe that they can.

Japan

Japan might have the most to prove out of this pool. They had a good showing in 2014 but they would have liked to do better. Japan has improved and this may be one of their best teams yet. 

Japan has played really well throughout Asia since the 2014. They have been playing a lot of lacrosse and playing well. They participated in the 2015 and 2017 ASPAC Games as well as the Southern Cross tournament in Australia. Japan finished 1st in the 2017 ASPAC Games as they cleared the house going 6-0. Japan defeated China, Australia, Korea, Taiwan, and Hong Kong. 

in 2014 Japan finished 8th overall and 5th in the Blue pool. Japan went 2-6 as they got one win in pool play against England and one win out of pool against New Zealand. Japan had a rocky road in 2014 but they can certainly do better in Israel. The Japanese have been playing well regionally but they just need show that they can put together wins out of pool play in 2018. 

Norway

The domestic growth and development in Norway has been really good. The University scene is what has really boomed in Norway and helped garner some growth and develop talent. The growth and development in Norway has been great and that should be on full display in Israel. 

Norway has had some good competition recently as they hosted the Scandinavian Cup in Oslo back in February. The Norwegians were also present at the Barcelona City tournament about a month ago.  Back in 2016 Norway competed in the European Championships as they finished 12th overall with a 4-4 record. They would have a decent showing as they beat teams such as Ireland, Austria, Denmark, and Russia. It wasn't the best performance after they got out of their group but it's something to build on.

In Denver Norway didn't do as well as many expected. Norway finished 25th overall with a 5-2 record. They would come in third in their pool, green pool, as they defeated Netherlands and China. Out of pool they grabbed wins over Russia, Austria, and Slovakia. Norway should be able to improve on that performance here in Israel, especially after all the lacrosse they have been playing.

White Group Schedule

Netherlands vs Norway - Thursday, July 12th

Norway vs Japan - Friday, July 13th

Japan vs Netherlands - Saturday, July 14th



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