Media Release | The AFL Outer East Commission has met and ratified our position on all competitions for Season 2020.
The decision to proceed or cancel has been a challenging and deeply personal one for all clubs, partcipants and the league and we support all decisions made by clubs and participants in season 2020. Throughout this process we have endeavoured to communicate, collaborate and consult with our clubs, stakeholders and our community to ensure that every position is considered and informed decisions are made. All decisions on competition return have been made utilising our Guiding Principles of Return and advice from our key stakeholders.
After consultation with all of our senior clubs over the past week, AFL Outer East can confirm that our traditional model of Premier, First and Second Division Seniors and Reserves will not commence in 2020. The manner in which our clubs have worked with us through this process has been outstanding and the decision to not proceed with divisional football in the 2020 Season, has been an immensely difficult but considered one.
Our position through-out this process is that if Government and AFL Victoria Protocols allow a return and our principles are met, we will support clubs who wish to participate in season 2020. We can confirm, through extensive consultaion with all clubs, that we will have one Senior division (Seniors and Reserves) in 2020, starting August 1st.
The competiting clubs who have chosen to opt-in to a Senior competition Division in 2020 will be announced Friday 3rd July. We will work with these clubs to support and prepare them for the implementation and management of all required protocols in returning to competition.
OPEN AGE NETBALL
Open Age Netball will proceed in Season 2020 and begin Saturday August 1st, under Government and Netball Victoia protocols. Entry of teams will be optional for clubs and the structure for the 2020 season will be confirmed once team nominations are in. The structure of our Open Netball competitions will be developed in consultation with our clubs.
UNDER 18’s Football
Our clubs were unanimous in their desire for Under 18’s in season 2020. The Under 18 Season wil begin Saturday July 25th with a divisional model utilised in 2020. Once team nominations are in over the next week, we will confirm the Under 18 Division Structure.
We are pleased to confirm that our clubs wish to proceed with a Senior Women’s season in 2020, starting Saturday August 1st. Once team nominations are in over the next week, we will confirm the Women’s competition Structure.
A start date for Veterans will be confirmed after consulation with clubs, and still dependant on enough clubs entering teams. Dates for the Veterans competition will be from 25th July and into August/September, these will be confirmed shortly once team nominations are in over the next week.
With provisional start dates for all competitions now confirmed, we will commence work on providing fixtures for the 2020 season, subject to team submissions due in early July. Junior sport as recently announced, will commence on July 25th for Netball and Football. AFL Outer East is working with Local Councils regarding local COVID-19 ‘hotspots’ and will continue to work diligently with those Clubs who are impacted by these developments in their local area. Will we continue to monitor all advice from key stakeholders in the lead up to these start dates.
We continue to urge all Outer East participants to practice good hygiene and adhere to all Government, AFL Victoria and Netball Victoria guidelines to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 in our community. The ongoing support and patience of our clubs and communities has been outstanding and we are grateful to all of our region in the manner in which our community has worked through this unique challenge.