Three northern beaches boys are off to Denmark to take on the world.
Oliver Franz, 16, and brothers Dominic and Benjamin Rak, 17 and 15, will represent Australia in the U/19 World Floorball Championships in the Danish city of Frederiksheyn from April 26-30.
Franz, of Beacon Hill, plays and trains with the Rak boys at Northern Beaches Floorball Club, based at Dee Why PCYC.
Franz said the World Cup will host 16 countries.
“I’m very excited to be part of it and be able to give all I have to represent this country,” he said.
The Rak brothers of Dee Why – who emigrated back to Australia after 13 years playing floorball in Slovakia – had only been in the country a matter of months when they were picked for the national team and helped Australia U/19s qualify for the World Cup.
At the Junior Australian Floorball Open (JAFO), Dom Rak was tournament MVP.
Floorball? It’s like indoor field hockey with lightweight ice-hockey sticks and a lightweight ball.
Befitting a niche sport, there’s a minimal amount of funding from the Australian Sports Commission. All boys have to fund their own trips.
The boys are students at Narrabeen Sports High (Dom and Ben Rak) and Northern Beaches Selective College Manly Campus (Franz) and have applied for grants, talked to local politicians and hosted fundraisers.
Though their parents will front most of the costs.
For the Rak family, that’s double.
“We need to cover all the expenses ourselves, not only travel costs but also the playing jerseys, shorts, towels, drink bottles, hats, uniforms,” Dom Rak explained.
“Our goal is to do all that.
“Another goal is to encourage and motivate other young kids to participate in sports, commit to hard work, enjoy every success on their journey to victories.
“Go out there, join the sports club, train hard and take a chance to create your successful future.”
Dom Rak said he and his brother, and Olly Franz, are “very excited and proud of making the national team”.
“We cannot wait to make our family, school, local community, and country proud just as much,” Dom Rak said.
Northern Beaches Floorball is hosting an Open Day on April 1 at Dee Why PCYC. Bring the kids for a play. All the details here.
Check out some fast and furious Aussie floorball action here: