Hello everyone and welcome to round 6. Well, it has been a few weeks since I have put pen to paper and there has been no shortage of topics to keep myself and the board busy over the past 4 weeks.
Last Saturday I started the day by heading to the home of JETS for a bit of league business and as usual I was welcomed by those friendly gatekeepers who have a thankless job but one which is extremely important. A few weeks ago, I could not get this venue for the opening of their New Netballs sheds, but I had the opportunity to walk around and see the fruits of their hard work which I am sure all clubs will now enjoy and have the opportunity to share in future weeks and years.
Thereafter I headed to Gordon st Rec reserve at Heyfield to help celebrate the amazing 1000 game achievement and milestone by SUA umpire Peter Perillo. I would like to thank the Heyfield and Yarram FNC’s for the respectful guard of honour as Pete entered the ground. This was a nice symbolic gesture willingly provided by both clubs and players. I think anyone within the NGFNL who has a football interest or involvement would know Pete and that alone is a testament to his longevity and impact on the game within the NGFNL.
In the social rooms after the game and on behalf of all NGFNL Clubs I presented Pete a certificate of appreciation to mark this milestone in his umpiring journey. I suspect there are a few more games in those legs and wonder if a larger milestone like 1500 games is not achievable. Well done, Pete.
My final trek on my Saturday and third venue of the day was to attend the inaugural night game at TTU which was hosting the Churchill Cougars. The weather gods presented a few minor challenges but from all reports, there were some great games and a good outcome was achieved. Both clubs should be congratulated. Despite the competitive games of football and netball the broader objective of the day was to raise awareness and support for charity Quantum which provides support & care across Gippsland to address the needs of community members. Well done everyone.
I am pleased to say that four out of the first five weeks of competition in the NGFNL have seen zero reportable incidents which is quite unique and reflects significant disciple from all clubs. A couple of indiscretions in round 4 had set penalties accepted and kept us from a faultless start to season 2022. Again, leadership across all levels is the key here and our game is much better for your efforts. Well done and I look forward to seeing what round 6 will deliver on this front.
On Wednesday night 11th May our newly formed junior subcommittee met for the first time to discuss and scope out the project objectives of our under 17 & under 19 plans for 2023. I am encouraged by the positive and proactive thinking which has been part of this of this groups thinking as this topic has been a tricky one to tackle for many various reasons. However, I acknowledge there will be some challenges before the start of 2023 season but in my eyes, despite any challenge we must strive to bridge the age bracket gap, create a pathway for players and parents to gravitate towards which has clarity, purpose and structure. When appropriate I will share further updates as they unfold on this topic with you all.
Even though it is only round 6 the Board is already thinking about our finals series and many decisions which flow from an organization perspective. We know now there will be issues at the Traralgon Rec Reserve which are exacerbated by Latrobe City planned capital works at this venue together with any pending Commonwealth games impact which intend venturing into various parts of Regional Victoria. In 2021 the Board was prepared to hold our Grand Final at Heyfield given their improved facilities specifically around the Netball courts, and this remains a viable option for us to consider in 2022.
From a finals catering perspective, the Board is in the process of re-writing the catering roster as we need to work our 11th Club YYN FNC into that roster and of course we lost some finals catering due to the 2 years of COVID impacts. There is a school of thought that our Grand Final is becoming such a big event and volunteer numbers stretched around most clubs that perhaps it is time for us to rotate a third club into the day’s activities and perhaps even our Preliminary Final becomes a shared event. Should we choose this path then clubs can expect to gain more regular income streams from finals catering than in previous years. Our intention is to table something shortly to our member clubs.
In round 2 I shared the news that the Yarram FNC could not field an 15 and Under Netball team however by Round 4 the club had found enough young ladies to register a team. Unfortunately, COVID and it’s protocols resulted in another forfeit in round 5. I sympathise with the YFNC and all players given the challenging to start to season 2022. I hope the worst is behind them and that from round 6 it is all smooth sailing. Keep your chin up we are thinking of you all.
This week our clubs will receive some information about a new initiative from our Board looking for nominations within our league for the “Un-sung Hero” programme. We will have a May, June, July, and August winner selected from nominations received. Another good initiative to recognize those invaluable volunteers around our league. If you have any ideas, then speak to your club President or Secretary who will have all the finer details about the criteria and nomination process.
I found a few old photos by default one of which was that mark by Stazza from Cowwarr a few years back and this got me thinking that maybe we could create a fun photo competition for us all in 2022. If you are a budding photographer (or happy snapper like Rodders and Fiona to name a couple) then get your gear ready to snap all sorts of photos around our league and send them to our League Admin for judging and display. Hopefully, come finals we will have an impressive photo gallery to pick our inaugural 2022 winner. We are working on a prize pool for the above 2 initiatives but most likely this will in the form of gift vouchers for our respective winners. Anyway, stay tuned to see what these initiatives can deliver to our Brand. I am excited by both.
For a number of weeks now our future stars of Netball have been attending tryouts for the selection of representative teams and to everyone who has participated including parents, coaches and assistants I offer a huge thank you. It is an exciting time to have NGFNL representative teams participate in external competitions. In the Boards eyes, it is well worth the investment. Apart from having the honour of wearing a NGFNL uniform, there are many other side benefits such as playing in a higher level of competition, new friends made and self-development. I have no doubt these young ladies will remember these times for many years to come. Good luck one and all.
Equally on the Football side of our brand we have appointed Robbie Cahill as our Under 18 interleague Coach for 2022. Rob has a passion for junior sport and has coached at a couple of clubs within the NGFNL before work and family necessitated a move away however we are fortunate to have him back. Formal requests for players nominations am will flow into club’s hands during the week and we are hopeful of putting together our strongest possible team for June 29th Carnaval in Morwell. Our league is always looking for assistance and I would like to think we can find a few trainers and alike to assist these young men in preparation for this upcoming event. If you are interested, please let me or our Administration know as it would be appreciated.
I happened to see something in my travels last week that I think is worthy of my time to make an appropriate and notable mention. At the conclusion of the YYNFNC & Cowwarr FNC Under 18 game both clubs came to together to shake hands and offer respectful congratulations, however the Coach of YYNFNC brought all the boys together and made special mention about how the game was played in good spirit and despite the Jets significant victory praised the young Saints for their efforts and encouraged them to keep working hard and listen to their respective coaches. Now despite the passion to win games of football, I think this is a great example of a Coach and Club who sees the bigger picture and I applaud and endorse these actions because from what I saw these young Saints have some talent and I have no doubt will be future stars of the CFNC in future years. Well done everyone.
Well, that’s enough from me as I am onto page 3 but hopefully you have found this update of interest. I wish all teams the best of luck today and I look forward to catching up with some you this weekend.
Play hard but play fair.
Speak soon David “dirty” Kyle President