Welcoming the world
For nine days in the summer of 2006, London, Ontario will be the centre of the field lacrosse world.
On Dec. 17, it was announced that London would be the host city of the 2006 World Field Lacrosse Championships, beating out some reputable cities such as London, England and Melbourne, Australia.
"Canada hasn't hosted a lacrosse world championship in a long time [1986 in Toronto]," said Western Mustangs head coach David Leich. "Our bid was great. It's easy to choose a great bid, a bid that makes sense business-wise."
Eighteen countries will be participating in the championships, including Argentina, Czech Republic, Hong Kong, Ireland, Japan, New Zealand, Scotland, South Korea, Tonga, and Wales to name a few.
However, the week of lacrosse action will not be completely dedicated to world championship competition. A "Festival of Lacrosse" will also be underway, featuring approximately 100 teams from 30 countries.
"Everyone in the lacrosse world will be there," Leich said. "There will probably be 1,2000 people in TD Waterhouse Stadium for the semi-finals and final."
London currently has 1,000 players competing in the sport of lacrosse and the sport is the second fastest growing sport in North America, behind women's hockey.