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Lacrosse - Championships
Many championships of lacrosse are organized around the world. Some of them are as follows −
Major League Lacrosse
The Major League Lacrosse or MLL is a professional lacrosse league founded in 1999 in the United States that showcases the world’s best lacrosse players. Every season consists of 56 matches running from April to August.
The MLL uses the regular lacrosse rules and regulations with some exceptions, such as a 16yard 2-point line and a 60-second shot clock.
The regular season play started in 2001 where 6 teams participated in MLL and they had plans to extend up to 19 teams.
MLL has 8 teams at present. They are Annapolis, Boston, Columbus, Charlotte, Denver, New York City, Palm Beach County, and Rochester.
Federation of International Lacrosse
There were two separate governing bodies for the men and women versions of the sport and this was one obstacle to the international development. Men lacrosse was governed by ILF and the women version by IFWLA.
In August, 2008, after four years of negotiation, the two bodies merged into one and a single body, the Federation of International Lacrosse (FIL) was formed. All championships previously operated under the ILF and IFWLA were taken over by the FIL.
The 2014 World Lacrosse Championship were held by the FIL in Denver, United States. The World Lacrosse Championships are held in every four years and are sponsored by the FIL itself. However, only eight nations have competed so far – Canada, the Iroquois Nationals and the US have top three places in these events.
European Lacrosse Federation
The next largest competition internationally held is the European Lacrosse Championship by the European Lacrosse Federation (ELF), held for both men and women teams. Since 1995, the ELF has been running all the European Championships.
Till 2001, they held these championships every year, then they changed the format to every four years between World Championships.
Till 2004, only 7 nations had participated in EIL, but from then a record number of countries participated with 12 men’s teams and 6 women’s teams making it the largest international lacrosse event of the year.
In the 2012 ELF Championship, England was victorious over Ireland, and the third place was taken by Sweden. In the 2014 championships, 32 nations competed in the ELF Championships.
Lacrosse has always been played for the most part in Canada and in the United States. Although there haven’t been a lot of communities of lacrosse but they surely are dedicated. However, recently lacrosse has been flourishing at an international level with teams established most particularly in Europe and East Asia.
Lacrosse, not having been an official Olympic sport as since 1908, the pinnacle of international lacrosse competitions consisting the World Championships held every four years begun in 1968. The championships began as a four-team invitational tournament sponsored by the International Lacrosse Federation.
Until 1986, the lacrosse world championships had been contested only by four countries, US, Canada, England, and Australia. Scotland and Wales competed in the women’s version. Now these are held at many levels like senior men, senior women, under19 men, under-19 women, etc.
After the expansion of the sport internationally, the 2006 Men’s World Championship was filled in by 21 countries and the Iroquois Nationals, representing six nations of the Iroquois Confederacy. They are the only Native (one of the first nations) American team to compete internationally.
In 2003, the first World Indoor Lacrosse Championship (WILC) was played by six nations at four different sites in Ontario. Canada won the championship in the final match against the Iroquois Nationals with a score of 21 – 4. The 2007 WILC was held in Halifax, from May 14 – May 20, and again won by Canada.