Posts by: ACE

Finals Decision

 

This afternoon, the AGL Loy Yang North Gippsland Football Netball League Board of Directors wrote to all clubs to inform them that the unpalatable decision has been made to abandon the 2021 finals series.

From the letter distributed to all clubs.

I am writing to everyone again to continue my openness and transparency from within the Board room and convey some of the decisions and associated rationale. 

You should all know nothing is considered lightly and nor without lengthy periods of consideration and consultancy where appropriate.

We all find ourselves anchored and locked in uncharted waters, and not only are they uncharted waters but with an environment congealed with ongoing uncertainty and with what seems constant directional change from those who govern us above.

The Board understand this drives frustration, and we equally understand that we all crave clarity to enable us to plan and execute outcomes within community sport.

Despite what any other league may be communicating, for which they are rightfully entitled to do, our Board sees many significant challenges to deliver an abridged finals competition. 

  • The current lockdown has been extended by the Andrews government, eradicating at least a further two weeks of ability to return to play, inclusive of time to prepare and train.
  • We understand the Andrews government has indicated and prompted some lifting of restrictions, but this is to be balanced against historic policy implemented after lockdown periods, stated vaccination criteria, and rising active cases in the Victorian community.
  • There is even some public suggestion leaked or otherwise, that should restrictions lift in regional Victoria, they will not include the return to play of community sport. 
  • As I write this note, our league has not played competitive sport for 9 weeks. We can add an additional 2 weeks from what I have mentioned above, let alone AFL Vic recommendation that a 14 day preparation for play should also apply. At what point do we all have an OH&S responsibility but to comply?
  • Player engagement is becoming tricky, and we still do not have a pathway for many players who reside in Melbourne or work interstate the return home and play 
  • Of course, on top of that we should also consider the workforce, volunteers, and umpires behind the scenes. Nothing in that space just happens without planning and effort.
  • Fairness and Equity of all matters in this space has been at the forefront of your Boards mind and throughout our decision-making processes we have been extremely cognizant of this within our final’s series and Brand. How do we balance one scenario against another or one club’s ability to advance against any other participant?

There were several other major decisions decided by the Board, which have become a ramification of making this decision.

  • The league will award a minor Premiership Cup to all teams who finished on top the league ladder after round 11 of the home and away competition. Ironically round 11 also signified the point in our season where every club had played each other once and every club had endured a season bye.
  • NO premiership flag nor premiership medals will be awarded.
  • In our junior competitions we have undefeated teams in under 15 & 17 Netball and under 18 Football and would like to recognize this outstanding achievement by having a minor premier and undefeated medal created for distribution to clubs. As a suggestion these could be handed out at club Presentation and Award nights assuming lockdown restrictions are lifted, and this can occur. A Board member is committed to attending to assist. 
  • From a respect and transparency perspective, all club Presidents who had a participating team in top position as at round 11 will contacted directly to advise this decision prior to any advice to our member clubs and prior to any public announcement 
  • League Best and Fairest awards will be delivered and formalized for season 2021. 
  • The Board intends to pre tape and produce a B & F award ceremony which will be available for download and viewing on AFL Grand Final eve. This will be a succinct version with other league highlights and interviews. Further details will be advised indue course regarding the time of release and access pathways etc.

In conclusion, I trust we all understand most of season 2021 has been a tricky space to navigate and anyone involved in community sport would have been challenged one way or another.

The challenges of getting the gang back together have been immense, the drain on volunteers has been like no other and the support of sponsors at every level has been inspiring and I thank you all.

If there is anything positive to come from this news is that your Board has spoken about, what can we do in 2022 that is different and engaging, what can we do to rebuild the value in community sport.

We now have some extra thinking time to ponder the ideas we already have in the suggestion box.

 So, whilst 2021 did not conclude as we all envisaged, I look forward to season 2022 with renewed enthusiasm.

I have great belief in the extended family of the NGFNL and I know that our brand will remain strong in pursuit of a collective passion for community sport. 

Speak soon 

David Kyle 
President  

Presidents Report – COVID Update & Special Edition

 

Hello everyone

WOW, what a ride the last 48 hours has been for us all.

Our Board understands the sense of frustration and disappointment many of you have been feeling, and we equally understand how mentally difficult it is for everyone to absorb and adjust to these constant “gear up and gear down” situations caused by these COVID lockdowns.

I admire the strength of you all, I admire how you pull together to overcome adversity and I admire the unity of togetherness we have in our Brand. Those attributes cannot be acquired; they must be manufactured from within, and I am proud of our leaders who take charge in these times, providing a way forward for others to follow. I stand and salute you all.

Of course, many of you will be wondering about the way forward and how is the future likely to unfold and I wanted to share with you all what I can at this point in time.

Firstly, we should all take a few deep breaths and think rationally about what we can control and what we cannot quickly followed by making sure we do not make a knee jerk decision when perhaps given some time, a better one could have been made.

It is our Boards absolute desire to try and deliver a Grand Final to determine our 2021 premier. I have probably been bullish over recent months advocating that one way or the other, we will deliver a premier in 2021 and to a degree, that is absolutely true.

However, I think it is also fair to say that our Board desires, and I think most people would prefer to achieve our 2021 Premier through some level of competition rather than to contemplate handing out a premiership flag without any competition.

Should the latter become our strategy, then any premiership awarded in such fashion will always be tainted in some way about how it was achieved and thus why our lack of enthusiasm for this concept is at the forefront of our minds.

The loss of last weekend’s finals games and the current lockdown for another week or two will present a series of hard-luck stories for many and I fear will also result in another series of hard-luck stories given the timeline for us to complete any finals games has now been severely impacted.

The Board met on Sunday to discuss a number of finals issues with our plan “B” strategy reviewed and recalibrated. But as mentioned above, we desire to give ourselves a few days before making any public and formal announcement to all and sundry.

What I can say here and now is that it would appear we may have only 2 weekends to get some finals action back in vogue however bearing in mind what happened last Friday night and the appetite for governments to lock down the state within several hours and therefore any thinking in that space could quickly diminish to one or none so we must remain fluid and nimble with our decisions.

We held a discussion around catering and agreed this was a frustrating topic but acknowledged the NGFNL catering roster would be rewritten for season 2022 with those clubs who had catering in 2021 at the front of the que in our proposed new roster.

We also believe any catering made available, should we be able to get back playing should be a simple nature meaning maybe a BBQ and a light refreshment station but ultimately, we will leave this decision with the catering club.

It also most likely spectators will again not be part of the equation; however, as previously advised, we intend to LIVE STREAM all action in every game, and we will not waiver from delivering that commitment to everyone.

We have also resolved to move back our league vote count with that date to be advised and aligned to when clubs are allowed to have some sort of reasonable crowd in their social rooms. The league has ordered trophies and medals etc and believes it is worthy of awarding these personal achievement awards. We will advise these details well in advance but equally, acknowledge we have some greater flexibility within this topic when it comes to an event timeline.

The Board acknowledges all the hard work our volunteers have undertaken and endured. Thank you does not seem to be enough, but your dedication and commitment is one of the great strengths within our Brand and therefore I salute you all for holding the line under adversity and really hope we can get a few finals games completed to give you all some sort of reward and validation.

To all sponsors of our league and within our clubs I again say thanks for your ongoing and untiring support in these extremely tough times. From a League perspective and I can share with you all that AGL Loy Yang have been in touch with me with constant regularity admiring the work of our clubs and reassuring us of their support both now and in the future.

This is amazing support, and we should all take some comfort from their words and unparalleled commitment to the NGFNL.

And finally, I wanted to acknowledge the work, commitment, and dedication of my fellow Directors and the Leagues Administration under adversity. Like many of your reading this article they too are volunteers who give up their time to try and deliver a quality product called the NGFNL.

Many praise me for a well-run league but it simply would not happen without our Admin and this fantastic group of Directors.

I will be in touch again before the week is out but, in the meantime, take care and look after your loved ones. Speak soon.

David J Kyle
President NGFNL

Regional Community Sport Cancelled

 

Tonight we have received a notification from AFL Victoria that following a directive from the Victorian State Government, all community sport across regional Victoria is to be cancelled immediately.

The NGFNL Board will meet over the weekend to discuss the next steps with our finals series.

However, unfortunately, no football or netball this weekend.