2. ETH­KICK 16

The Tribune (NZ) - - NEWS -

The coun­try’s big­gest eth­nic foot­ball tour­na­ment in­volv­ing 40 teams in a cel­e­bra­tion of sport and cul­tures at Cen­tral En­ergy Trust Arena this Satur­day.

Eth­kick, the seven-a-side com­mu­nity foot­ball tour­na­ment cel­e­brat­ing cul­tural and eth­nic di­ver­sity is go­ing from strength to strength.

In its eighth year, it is ready the big­gest eth­nic foot­ball tour­na­ment in New Zealand, and con­venor Mike Sa­hayam says the 40 team places for this Satur­day’s tour­na­ment at the Cen­tral En­ergy Trust Arena filled up quickly this time.

‘‘This event is about cel­e­brat­ing our com­mu­nity and the di­ver­sity which it holds, while sup­port­ing new mi­grants into Manawatu to so­cialise as well as gain some skills in the sport of foot­ball.’’

Ac­knowl­edged in 2013 with a New Zealand Di­ver­sity Award, the Eth­kick is run with the sup­port of Sport Manawatu, the Palmer­ston North City Coun­cil and the Marist Foot­ball Club,

The open­ing cer­e­mony is at 8.30am with kick-off for the round robin at 9am. the fi­nals take place at 4.30pm.

Run­ning in con­junc­tion with the main tour­na­ment from 11am is Ju­nior Eth­kick. In­tro­duced in 2014 as a kids’ foot­ball skills ini­tia­tive for 13s and un­der, the young­sters will be coached in a skills and drills pro­gramme, fol­lowed by a mini World Cup-styled com­pe­ti­tion.

Play­ers and sup­port­ers are en­cour­aged to dress in their coun­try of ori­gin colours, with stalls and other chil­dren’s en­ter­tain­ment.

PHOTO DAVID UN­WIN/ FAIRFAX NZ

Kelvin Hove from team Sunny Zim­babwe and Madi­son Buchanan from team Euro­pean Elite con­test the ball in dur­ing Eth­kick 2015.

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