Competitions in limbo but BFL juniors set to start

July 16, 2020 BY

Every Bellarine Football League club will be represented at under-15 and under-13 level, including Torquay (seen here in an intraclub practice match on Sunday). Photo: PETER MARSHALL

SENIOR female and under-19 men’s football could become the latest victim of the COVID-19 pandemic following the Victorian government’s decision to postpone a return to contact training and play.
Contact training was due to begin earlier this week, with matches to start for the under-19 competition on August 1 and senior female footy the following day.
The AFL Barwon Commission was due to meet last night (Wednesday) to discuss the latest developments.
However, it is unlikely they will make the call now to cancel the season for those respective sections.
“With a significant increase in coronavirus (COVID-19) cases in Melbourne and active cases in a number of many regional communities, the Chief Health Officer has determined that community sport in regional Victoria must remain non-contact,” the Victorian government said in a statement at the weekend.
“For players aged 18 and under in areas outside of metropolitan and Mitchell Shire, full training and competition can continue.
“Further easing of restrictions, including target dates, will be considered by Professor (Brett) Sutton by the end of July.”
However, the sound of Sherrin on leather will return to football ovals across the region this weekend with the start of the AFL Barwon junior season.
Every Bellarine Football League club will be represented at under-15 and under-13 level, with the Surf Coast Suns also fielding two teams in the under-13 competition.
Eight BFL clubs will participate in the under-17 competition, with Torquay fielding three teams, and Geelong Amateur and Ocean Grove two apiece.
The under-18 girls’ competition will feature Geelong Amateur and the newly-formed Peninsula Sharks, which takes in players from the across the clubs located on the Bellarine Peninsula.
Five BFL clubs have entered teams in the under-15 girls’ competition, while Newcomb has joined forces with GFL club St Albans to form a side.
Two weeks of grading will be followed by a seven-round home-and-away season. Grand finals have been scheduled for the weekend of September 19-20.
The majority of Bellarine clubs also have teams in the non-competitive under-12 girls, and under-11, under-10 and under-9 competitions.
Those age groups will play a 10-week season.
Tom King is the editor of Head to the site for more regional football coverage.

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