The Centre has long standing links with the Solomon Islands, having helped establish Futsal in the country and hosting the team many times as they played in the National Futsal League.
The Centre (then Dural Sport and Leisure Centre), was built by the Dural District Baptist Church in place of a traditional church building. Welcoming members of the community throughout the week through sports competitions, Inflatable World, the Men’s Shed, café and more, it is also home for worship services and church activities.
During a mission trip in 2000, Brian Codrington and his team found that there was no organised sport for children under the age of 14 in the Solomon Islands. With the aid of funds from sports fees at The Centre, he continued to take teams back to run Futsal coaching clinics and establish a Futsal League. Over the years as the program gained local and government support, Dural’s focus transitioned to training up local leaders and coaches to continue to allow the program to become self-sufficient.
Futsal took off in the Solomon Islands. Teams from the Solomon Islands would come out regularly to Australia and play in National competitions. The Islands were eventually able to put together an International team who were able to play in four Futsal World Cups so far, currently seeking to qualify again for the 2024 Cup in Uzbekistan.
The below video shows the journey of some of the boys who were part of the early Futsal programs, who are now successfully playing for their International Squad.
In July 2023, The Centre hosted two games in an International tri-series between Australia’s Futsalroos and the Solomon Islands.
The teams put in a thrilling series with three tightly matched games, though Australia came through with the victory in the end.
It was amazing to see the team of men from the Solomon Islands, many of whom had played at and visited The Centre many times as they grew up, back in Dural now representing their country.