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History

In 1994, girls lacrosse teams were well established in and around the district of Stockport, in particular the Stockport and Mellor Clubs. The Metro boys had had tours to America since 1976, and this provided the opportunity for contact to be made between the Metros Manager, Tony Malkin and interested groups within Anne Arundel County, Maryland, to agree that English girls could be hosted with the 1996 Easter Metro Tour. Once the tour planning needed to be under way, Steve Willet and Steve Barry took the lead for the USA, and the Metro girls toured with the boys during Easter 1996, with Sue Nicholls and Ann Sharp as coaches. For the programme to gain a momentum it was agreed that the American Group would return in the same year during July, which they did travelling then under the name of the Chesapeake 'Rising Stars'., later to become 'CrosseOver' Needless to say, the 'home' and 'away' tours were a success, and whilst at that time there was no commitment for a repeat in 1998, nevertheless that's what happened, with the girls slotting into the same pattern of exchange years as the boys. 1998 saw the switch for Metros to move their tour dates to the 'States' from Easter to July, arranged that year to specifically coincide with the Men's World Championships. For this tour the MetroGirls management and coaches expanded to include Debs Potts, Alex Nicholls, David Sharp and Anne Bryant. The summer journey was a resounding success, and for the tours that followed, the summer sunshine was just too much of an attraction to revert to back to an Easter event. Steve and his group returned to tour in the UK in 1999. In 2000 the girls and boys adopted the practical system of travelling separately, but generally on consecutive days, which provided for both groups to be the centre of attraction on their arrival and departure whilst sharing game dates and venues, whenever practicable. This being a particular attraction in England where the many of girls and boys are members of the same lacrosse Clubs. By 2001 Anne Arundel had included Mark Corcoron, Leslie Rose, Rosemarie Schwer, Dave Gateau and Tony Liberto. For Metros, Anne Bryant was leader, with Ian Ritchie, Debs Potts, Lynne Jones and Gill Aldcroft. As the pattern was now fully established, the MetroGirls, of course returned in 2002 & 2004 with Ian as leader, and in 2006 with Tony & Michelle becoming taking over the leadership. Why has it succeeded? Well! The generosity of the host families has been and continues to be the key, although the commitment of the managers and coaches to accept the responsibility of organising tours and hosting is paramount. This year's 2010 MetroGirls tour to the USA is led by Michelle Malkin & Tony Malkin, supported by Carina Eaton, Julie Barker, Laura Callaghan, & Martin Rees, who, along with 24 girls from Mellor, Stockport & Wirral will be welcomed by 'CrosseOver's leader Steve Willett, his management team and Anne Arundel families