The cards in the fight for the EUROBOWL, the highest sports award for club teams, will be reshuffled in 2018. The Crusaders will be looking to rewrite history by winning a EUROBOWL for the first time in 25 years as they did so in 1991 & 1992. The talented group of mostly home-grown players will be backed up by a few American import players. But the club also saw some players returning from overseas collegiate action. Names like Dylan Bakker, Nicky Bakker, Jens Ijdema and Leroy Akpan all spend time in college programs overseas but will be welcomed back with open arms to the active roster.

Also, a successful open try-out helped the Crusaders coaches fill the 2018 roster with more talent, Belgian talent. As Belgium has no team in a highly competitive European competition, talented Belgian players will be looking for a home with the Dutch neighbours. The Dutch/Belgium collaboration has always been surpassingly effective in the last couple of years for the Crusaders exampling the work of Stijn Dossche and Nick Vanhee who played a big part in the Cru’s success.

The BIG6 European Football League plays the EUROBOWL tournament in a challenger format in the next season: two challengers compete with the last two finalists of the last EUROBOWL.

Two outstanding German teams in the tournament, one of them being the New Yorker Lions from Braunschweig. The North Germans won the EUROBOWL three times in a row. The other finalist of last year, Samsung Frankfurt Universe has also announced for the competition. The Universe crowned their meteoric rise in the recent years by winning the EFL Bowl in 2016 and the participation in this year’s EUROBOWL, where they lost versus the Lions in front of 7,500 spectators at the Volksbank Stadium in their home country last edition.

The two challengers are also in the circle of the top European teams. The Dutch national champion Amsterdam Crusaders, participant in the BIG6 2017, and finalist of the EFL Bowl against the Samsung Frankfurt Universe in 2016 can take revenge for the defeat they took last edition. The competition is completed by Flash La Courneuve from Paris. The French top team, which was already in a EUROBOWL final some what years ago, is peppered with local internationals who won the gold medal at the World Games under head coach Patrick Esume in the final against the German team.

As in previous years, each participating team has a home and an away game. The two challengers compete against the two EUROBOWL participants of the previous year who do not meet in the preliminary round.

The EUROBOWL tournament in challenger format begins on April 14th 2018 with the encounters Flash La Courneuve vs. New Yorker Lions and Amsterdam Crusaders vs. Samsung Frankfurt Universe. The second game day will take place on April 28th when the New Yorker Lions meet the Amsterdam Crusaders, and the Samsung Frankfurt Universe hosts Flash La Courneuve. The tournament ends on the weekend of 9/10th of June with the EUROBOWL XXXII.

Important dates:

April 14 th:
3 p.m: Flash La Courneuve – New Yorker Lions, Stade Géo André
6 p.m.: Amsterdam Crusaders – Samsung Frankfurt Universe, Sportpark Sloten

April 28 th:
6 p.m.: New Yorker Lions – Amsterdam Crusaders, Eintracht Stadion
7 p.m.: Samsung Frankfurt Universe – Flash La Courneuve, Volksbank Stadion

June 9 th/10 th: