By Ewen McRae
Green Gully Reserve became a sea of colour when the Miniroos Cup was staged for the first time.
The Green Gully Soccer Club’s junior tournament drew teams from across the state, with 64 teams, 750 players and 2000 spectators lighting up the day last week.
Green Gully president Dennis Venes said the day was a resounding success.
“We felt like this was something that was needed in the western suburbs … it was a brilliant success,” Mr Venes said.
“We actually had to cap the numbers because there was so much interest. We also had some of our juniors referee the younger kids to give them an insight into that side of the game.”
Under-7 through to under-11 teams from all over Melbourne, as well as some from as far afield as Swan Hill and Bendigo, joined in the day’s games, which featured a round-robin, knock-out games and a champion team for each age group.
Mr Venes said the cup would become an annual event.
“This is what football is all about,” he said. “The feedback we have received on the day and since then has been overwhelmingly positive.
“It’s very heartening for us, and we’re already looking at next year and how we can make it bigger and better.
“It was a long day for all involved, but the kids all enjoyed themselves, which is the main thing. The kids were the winners on the day.”