Central European Football League

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Central European Football League
Central European Football League.png
Formerly Southeast European League of American Football (SELAF)
Sport American Football
Founded 2005; 12 years ago (2005)
Inaugural season 2006
No. of teams 7
Country  Austria
 Hungary
 Serbia
 Poland
 Denmark
 Turkey
Formerly:
 Slovakia
 Bosnia and Herzegovina
 Croatia
 Slovenia
Most recent
champion(s)
Graz Giants (1st title)
Most titles Belgrade Vukovi (6 titles)
TV partner(s) Sport Klub
Official website european-league.com

The Central European Football League (CEFL) is a regional American football league. Initially, the league was named Southeastern European League of American Football (SELAF), and featured teams from just Serbia and Slovenia, joined by teams from Austria, Croatia, Hungary, Slovakia, Turkey, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Poland and Denmark in the following seasons.

The league completed its first season in October 2006. Since the 2010 season, the league is played during the spring and summer months. This is in contrast to the first four seasons, when the schedule was played out from spring to fall, with a summer break.

The current champions are the Graz Giants, after beating the Belgrade Vukovi in CEFL Bowl XI 52-49, played in Graz on 3 July 2016.

History[edit]

2006 – Inaugural Season[edit]

The season featured a total of five teams: the Belgrade Vukovi, the Kragujevac Wild Boars, the Novi Sad Dukes and Sirmium Legionaries from Serbia, and Ljubljana Silverhawks from Slovenia.

The first ever league champions were the Wild Boars who beat the Vukovi 23–12 in SELAF Bowl, played in Belgrade on 8 October 2006.

2007[edit]

The second season was already a season of expansion for the league with the two new teams, a top Hungarian team, Budapest Wolves, and CNC Gladiators, then of Austrian Division I, and the Legionaries not returning. For the first time teams were split into two conferences: North and South. North Conference consisted of Gladiators, Silverhawks and Wolves; South Conference consisted of three Serbian teams: Dukes, Vukovi and Wild Boars.

The bowl game was played in Belgrade on 27 October 2007, with the title won by Vukovi, after beating the Wolves 28–27 in a dramatic fashion.

That season was also the first in which the league made it to television: the semifinal and the bowl game were televised on Serbian nationally covered TV Avala.

2008[edit]

The league changed its name to Central European Football League and the third season featured three new teams from three different countries: the Bratislava Monarchs from Slovakia, the Budapest Cowboys from Hungary and the Zagreb Thunder from Croatia, while the Wild Boars did not return. The Cowboys and Thunder joined the South Conference, also filling the vacant spot made with the departure of the Wild Boars, while the Monarchs were placed in North Conference.

In the newly named CEFL bowl, Gladiators beat the Vukovi 14–8 in Vienna on 25 October 2008.

2009[edit]

In the 2009 season, the Cineplexx Blue Devils of Austria replaced the non-returning Monarchs. They joined a newly formed conference with the Thunder, Vukovi and the Wolves. The other conference consisted of 2008 champions, the Gladiators, along with the Cowboys, the Dukes and the Silverhawks.

The bowl game was again played in Belgrade on 24 October 2009, with the Vukovi reclaiming the title after beating the Blue Devils 39–20.

The season was also a considerable milestone for the league, as multiple league games have been televised on a trans-European channel Sport Klub.

2010[edit]

The league changed format again in 2010, with the Turkish national champion Istanbul Cavaliers joining the league and the Cowboys, the Gladiators and the Thunder not returning. The Cavaliers were scheduled to play the Blue Devils in the newly formed wild card cup, with the winner taking the final playoff spot.

The bowl game was played in Ivančna Gorica, Slovenia on 18 July 2010, where the Vukovi beat the Silverhawks 42–20 to become the league champions once again.

2011[edit]

In the 2011 season the league saw the departure of the Blue Devils and the Dukes, leaving four teams, all national champions in their respective countries, in competition.

The title was again claimed by the Vukovi who beat the Wolves 34–33 in yet another dramatic bowl game between these two teams, played in Budapest on 23 July 2011.

2012[edit]

Croatian top team Zagreb Patriots joined the league and the Blue Devils took part once again. The league changed its name to Sport Klub CEFL and had multiple league games broadcast on Sport Klub television channels. The 2012 season started on 17 March, with five teams from five different countries competing.

CEFL Bowl VII was played in Belgrade on 21 July 2012 where the Silverhawks won their first title after beating the Vukovi, 34–21.

2013[edit]

In 2013, the league has seen the return of one of its original teams, the Kragujevac Wild Boars of Serbia.[1] The Wild Boars last played in 2007 and they have also won the trophy in the inaugural season in 2006. The Blue Devils and Patriots have left the league in 2013.

The bowl game was again played in Belgrade on 7 July 2013, with the Vukovi reclaiming the title after the most convincing bowl game win over the Wild Boars 42–0.

2014[edit]

The 2014 season was played with four teams, Kragujevac Wild Boars and Belgrade Vukovi from Serbia, Ljubljana Silverhawks from Slovenia and the Docler Wolves from Hungary. Ljubljana Silverhawks hosted Belgrade Vukovi in CEFL Bowl IX. Vukovi won the title beating the Silverhawks 27 to 17 in the final.[2]

2015[edit]

The 2015 season will be once again be played with four teams. Belgrade Vukovi and Ljubljana Silverhawks will continue in the league and they will be accompanied by two returning former teams, the Novi Sad Dukes from Serbia and the Cineplexx Blue Devils from Austria. The Kragujevac Wild Boars and The Budapest Docler Wolves were departed from the league. The Wolves failed to win a single match in the last two seasons.[3] The League's 10th season began in April 2015.

2016[edit]

The 2016 season marked the expansion of the CEFL with 12 teams. The Belgrade Vukovi, the Ljubljana Silverhawks, the Novi Sad Dukes, and the Cineplexx Blue Devils remained when they joined by the Budapest Cowbells of Hungary and the Projekt Spielberg Graz Giants, as well as former Alpe Adria Football League teams, the Kranj Alp Devils, the Sarajevo Spartans of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Domžale Tigers, the Inđija Indians, and the Niš Imperatori. Also returning to the CEFL is the Zagreb Patriots of Croatia.

2017[edit]

In 2017 some former IFAF Champions League teams joined to the CEFL tournament:

This year the league introduced CEFL Cup:

CEFL Bowls[edit]

Year Host City Home Result Visitor
2006 SELAF Bowl I Serbia Belgrade Serbia Belgrade Vukovi 12–23 Serbia Kragujevac Wild Boars
2007 SELAF Bowl II Serbia Belgrade Serbia Belgrade Vukovi 28–27 Hungary Budapest Wolves
2008 CEFL Bowl III Austria Vienna Austria CNC Gladiators 14–8 Serbia Belgrade Vukovi
2009 CEFL Bowl IV Serbia Belgrade Serbia Belgrade Vukovi 39–20 Austria Cineplexx Blue Devils
2010 CEFL Bowl V Slovenia Ivančna Gorica Slovenia Ljubljana Silverhawks 20–42 Serbia Belgrade Vukovi
2011 CEFL Bowl VI Hungary Budapest Hungary Budapest Wolves 33–34 Serbia Belgrade Vukovi
2012 CEFL Bowl VII Serbia Belgrade Serbia Belgrade Vukovi 21–34 Slovenia Ljubljana Silverhawks
2013 CEFL Bowl VIII Serbia Belgrade Serbia Belgrade Vukovi 42–0 Serbia Kragujevac Wild Boars
2014 CEFL Bowl IX Slovenia Ivančna Gorica Slovenia Ljubljana Silverhawks 17–27 Serbia Belgrade Vukovi
2015 CEFL Bowl X Serbia Novi Sad Serbia Novi Sad Dukes 25–23[6] Serbia Belgrade Vukovi
2016 CEFL Bowl XI Austria Graz Austria Graz Giants 52–49[7] Serbia Belgrade Vukovi

Champions[edit]

Club Won Years won
Serbia Belgrade Vukovi 6 2007, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014
Serbia Kragujevac Wild Boars 1 2006
Austria CNC Gladiators 1 2008
Slovenia Ljubljana Silverhawks 1 2012
Serbia Novi Sad Dukes 1 2015
Austria Graz Giants 1 2016

Participating teams[edit]

Team Nat Seasons 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017
SBB Vukovi Beograd Serbia 2006–present
Novi Sad Dukes Serbia 2006-2010, 2015–2016
Sirmium Legionaries Serbia 2006
Kragujevac Wild Boars Serbia 2006-2007, 2013-2014, 2017
Ljubljana Silverhawks Slovenia 2006–2016
Budapest Wolves Hungary 2007–2014
CNC Gladiators Austria 2007–2008
Bratislava Monarchs Slovakia 2008
Budapest Cowbells Hungary 2008-2009, 2016–present
Gromovi Zagreb Croatia 2008-2009
Cineplexx Blue Devils Austria 2009-2010, 2012, 2015–2016
Istanbul Cavaliers Turkey 2011
Zagreb Patriots Croatia 2012, 2016
Graz Giants Austria 2016
Kranj Alp Devils Slovenia 2016
Sarajevo Spartans Bosnia and Herzegovina 2016
Domžale Tigers Slovenia 2016
Inđija Indians Serbia 2016
Niš Imperatori Serbia 2016
Panthers Wrocław Poland 2017
Swarco Raiders Tirol Austria 2017
Triangle Razorbacks Denmark 2017
Koç Rams Turkey 2017
  • Note: those in bold are current participants.

References[edit]

Notes[edit]

External links[edit]