American football season starts in Prague
The 24th season will see six teams compete in 13 regular rounds
The American football season in the Czech Republic is starting April 1 with a match between the Prague Black Panthers and Prague Lions at Městský stadion in Čelákovice at 3 pm. The American football season is in its 24th year.
When the two Prague teams meet it is usually an exciting game. They last met for the XXIII Czech Bowl in July 2016 in Viktoria Stadion in Žižkov (see video below), with the Black Panthers winning 10 to 9. The final this year is also set for the end of July in Viktoria Stadion, and the season will determine which teams will compete.
In the history of the bowl, the Black Panthers competed 21 times and won 16, while the Lions competed 13 times and won four. The other teams to win the Czech Bowl are the Prague Black Hawks and the Ostrava Steelers.
The Czech League of American Football (ČLAF) currently has six teams. Aside from the Lions and Black Panthers, there are the Příbram Bobcats, Trnava Bulldogs (SK), Pardubice Stallions and Ostrava Steelers.
The season will have 13 rounds, with teams meeting each weekend until June 24–25. Each team plays 10 matches. After a break, the top teams from the round robin season will meet at Czech Bowl XXIV on July 24 at 7 pm.
American football is still a bit of a niche sport in the Czech Republic. Association football, called soccer in the US to avoid confusion, is by far more popular. But interest is growing, according to Radim Kroulík of the ČLAF. He said that last year 340,000 people watched the Czech Bowl when it was televised. Counting the lower divisions, There are now 31 American football clubs with 3,000 members.
Prague Black Panthers on Prague.TV
Prague Lions on Prague.TV
Czech League of American Football (ČLAF)
PBP vs Prague Lions, April 1st starting 3pm (Facebook event page)
Video on YouTube
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