13 Jan 2016

Sport: Solomons name squad for OFC Futsal defence

12:35 pm on 13 January 2016

The Solomon Islands will rely on a core of experienced players as they attempt to win a fourth straight Oceania Futsal Championship title next month.

The Kurukuru are the three time defending OFC champions and represented Oceania at the past two World Cups but no longer have an international ranking after going more than two years without playing a game.

The final 14-man squad includes a host of veterans such as Elliot Ragomo, Samuel Osifelo and Micah Lea'alafa, with Alvin Hou and Robert Laua the only new caps.

The Kurukuru are three time defending Oceania Futsal Champions.

The Kurukuru are three time defending Oceania Futsal Champions. Photo: Oceania Football

Assistant coach Jerry Sam says after a tough couple of years experience will be important.

"We know that this championship it's not easy so we have to work harder. I think so far the training is good. I have two new faces in the squad but the rest is the experienced players because I believe the experience will carry us through and the talent that we have with the combination of the young players in the squad will give us a boost and make a difference."

The Solomon Islands team played ten games in Australia before Christmas and head back next week to round off their preparations with two friendly internationals against the Futsalroos.

New head coach Juliano Schmeling is currently in Brazil and will link up with the team next week.

Kurukuru squad:

Paul Huia (GK), Anthony Talo (GK), Avin Hou, Jeffery Bule, Samuel Osifelo, Francis Lafai, Mathias Saru, Robert Laua, Jack Wetney, Elliot Ragomo, James Egeta, Micah Lea'alafa, George Stevenson, Coleman Makau.

Solomon Islands government rewards futsal success

Meanwhile, the Solomon Islands government will pay a reward to the national Under-12 and Under-14 teams that impressed during last week's Australian National Futsal Championships.

The Under-12s won their competition while the Under-14s finished third.

Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare says the Government will pay each of the 20 players SI$1,500, or US$180.

Mr Sogavare said the players have made the government, parents, friends and the country as a whole very proud with their outstanding results.

The government had already provided $80,000 Solomon Islands dollars to help the teams travel to Australia.

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Photo: Supplied