EAFL Falcons meet Kiev Patriots in first battle on international this season

posted on June 18, 2017

A roster full of fresh faces is set to head to Ukraine for the Emirates American Football League (EAFL) Falcons’ first international test on foreign soil this season.

Featuring a squad of 20 players, many of whom will get their initial taste with the Falcons, the EAFL’s finest will face the Kiev Patriots on Saturday as the programmes meet for the first time.

The Falcons are no strangers to playing in hostile territory, having gone a perfect 3-0 last season in trips to Sri Lanka, Kazakhstan and India. They then beat Kazakhstan’s Almaty Titans in a rematch in Dubai in April, one day after blowing out Saudi Arabia’s Jeddah side.

Those Falcons teams, however, included several of the EAFL’s most established players, such as Zavier Cobb, Vivaldi Tulysse, Luke Norrey, Robby Lopez, Jay Hall, Alex Rodriguez and more.

The squad heading to Kiev is less experienced and has a higher mix of newcomers among the group of veterans. Taylor Avritt, one of the leaders of the Falcons, is eager to see how his team-mates respond to the challenge.

“I think it’s going to be a really good opportunity for the newer guys that are part of the Falcons team to get acquainted with how we as the Falcons organisation play, especially travelling to international lands and playing against a really well-equipped and pretty physical Ukrainian team,” Avritt said.“I think it’s going to be a big learning curve for a lot of us young guys and I’m really looking forward to us playing physical with them and seeing if we can compete in a foreign territory for us.”

While the Falcons have faced a range of talented international players with diverse backgrounds, their defence may be in for its toughest test yet against Kiev running back Dileel Bartley.

The American, who played college football at Graceland University, is likely to be utilised heavily by the Patriots in the clash.

The Falcons will also be meeting a team hungry to prove itself to its nation in order to continue growing the sport’s presence in Ukraine.

Maksym Shylo, president of the Ukrainian League of American Football (ULAF), said: “On Saturday we hope to see a bright sports show. Seeing that Ukrainians love American football, I hope this match will become a bright event in the history of American football in Ukraine. For ULAF, it’s a great event.

“Thanks to this game we can very well showcase American football to the Ukrainians.”

FALCONS ROSTER

Michael Andersen, Taylor Avritt, Mathias Bartsch, Perry Blackburn, Paul Carrizosa, Dino Drimakis, Ali Ellesawy, Mo Eltigani, Moe Fouda, John Holets, Shady Hussein, Justin Johnson, Justin Kesterson, Robert Lega, Arthur Provensal, Lorrence Reid, Michael Salvati, Mark Vowles, Chris Cunningham, Thomas Newman



Jay Asser - Sport360

http://sport360.com/article/other/eafl/236277/eafl-falcons-meet-kiev-patriots-in-first-battle-on-international-soil-of-the-season/