The History of it all…

We are all ‘footballers’ from a different era. As kids, growing up… jumpers were our goalposts! Some of us are ex-footballers, others are still trying to play each week… We had all played Association Football [soccer… the World Game] or Aussie rules, or even the rugby codes!

We are players then, from many versions… from many different levels… our message is one and true… We love football!

We have all experienced the pleasures and euphoria that team games can bring. Certainly, we have all experienced the pain that can also accompany team games… losing, injuries and the recovery that seems to take longer as we age. It is all character-building stuff. However, it doesn’t seem to deter us… Personally, I kicked a ball for the first time, over 60 years ago! More recently? Yesterday!

So, we thank whoever claims and designed this modern version of football, [the more facetious amongst our group would say that I have been playing Walking Football for these past 50 years!]  We thank Curtin University initially for providing the opportunity to ‘try out’ Walking Football at the Edinburgh Oval, some 12 months ago. We also thank TS for allowing us to use Fox Football 5’s as a base, to meet with other ‘football mad’ players from north and south of the river.

We all appreciate the benefits to our physical and mental wellbeing, more so in these uncertain times.

Way back in February 2020, a university professor from British Colombia, Canada was invited to Curtin University.

He organised and delivered a football session that included 4v4 and 5v5 running football and 5v5 Walking Football. The ulterior motive, I suspect, was to develop interest in Super Masters 60+ Small-sided Football World Cup Tournaments, from the Australasian region for Competitions from 2022. I only attended the session by good fortune.

As luck would have it, we fall within their upper age range for the comps. We thoroughly enjoyed the session, more so for the implications…

Personally, it was a moment of epiphany… We could do this! I know that two or three of the blokes were also experiencing similar feelings. Recently just retired, [December 2019] I decided to act on this and contact the prof on his return to Canada…

In return, we have been invited to enter two 9-player squads to compete in the Super Masters World Cup to be held in Zurich, 2022, [Covid19 permitting]… and we’ll have ‘1st dibs’ on future comps. We immediately started to develop a proposal to present to potential players for a Team Australia entry in 2022.

It soon became evident that the potential in all of this, is massive! Even though all the players were prepared to self-fund the trip, it was also evident that we would need the basics to develop the proposal… Hence the necessity for a Non-for-profit incorporated association, to safeguard our members, for membership to grow, [individuals and teams] and to achieve our simple goals.

Thank you,

Anthony Bellis… a founding member of the Association of Walking Football Australia

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