Tuesday, 12 October 2010

Nymark Idrettslag (Norway)

Nymark IL are a fourth division Norwegian side from the beautiful city of Bergen, on the country's west coast. They were formed in 1921, in the borough of Årstad, in the south of the city. As is often the way in Norway, they are part of a wider sports association, which also has very popular cycling and athletics wings.

They play at a multi sports facility in the shadow of the stadium of their more illustrious city rivals SK Brann, known locally as the the Nymarksbanene fields. Casting an even more impressive shadow over the ground is Ulriken, the highest of the seven mountains that surround Bergen, and an impressive backdrop to any match.

They were originally part of the Arbeidernes Idrettsforbund, or Worker's Federation of Sports, the first explicit worker's sports society in the country, and linked to the Communist Red Sport International. The Federation was formed after 15 wrestlers were banned by the Norwegian Wrestling Federation for taking part in what they deemed to be a politicised sports meeting. This helped spawn a worker's federation of sports that soon spread across the country, and despite a brave national boycott of sports by its members during the Nazi occupation, fizzled out when it merged with the Norwegian Confederation of Sport in 1946.

These days Nymark are still closely connected to the people of Årstad, but in a slightly less politicised way. Although get them riled up and they'll still let you know what's what!

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