Return to play???


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Post by Lee Harradine on Tue Apr 28, 2020 8:48 am

Statement by SANFL

28 April 2020


SANFL is awaiting further detail on the possible lifting of social restrictions and health advice from Federal and State Governments in mid-May before announcing any update on a return to play for both State League and Community Football.

The League had intended to provide a more detailed outline for a return to footy by the end of this month but will now wait to provide any update on resumption of activity until after May 11.
Until such time, the current season postponement date for matches and training of May 31 still stands.

SANFL Chief Executive Officer Jake Parkinson said that while all football participants and supporters wanted clarity around a return to play, the work happening in the background was constantly changing due to changing circumstances with COVID-19.
“The announcement by the Prime Minister late last week that the National Cabinet will develop a guiding set of principles for sport at all levels reinforces the extensive work both the AFL and SANFL have been doing to refine protocols and processes on how and when our seasons will commence,” Mr Parkinson said.

“The Federal and State Governments have also indicated the possibility of easing of some restrictions by around mid-May, should the current low trend of transmission continue.

“As a result of these developments and reviews, the timetable we are now working to has been revised.”

Mr Parkinson said he was pleased that both the Federal and State Governments had recognised the importance of local sport resuming to re-connect support networks that were currently stretched or not operating, including SANFL Clubs.

“We continue to focus on being aligned with the advice of the State Government and the relevant medical authorities and are ensuring everything we do protects the health and safety of our participants and wider community,” he said.
“At a State League level, we are also working closely with the SA Department of Health as well as the Office of Recreation, Sport and Racing with regards to protocols and guidelines to assist with a return to play in SA.

“In addition to the safety of participants and the broader community, the integrity of the competitions and financial impact of returning to football must also be carefully considered, so any revised competition is sustainable and doesn’t place any undue financial pressure on clubs and leagues.”

I hope I'm not reading too much into the last paragraph.

Lee Harradine
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Post by firstblood on Fri May 01, 2020 10:12 am

Here's an idea, if and when the season starts, why not just have members only allowed in at games for the first few weeks, if there are any outbreaks of the virus which i doubt there will be, they can then be easily traced. Similar to the government App through the scanning of tickets at the gates.
when you look at the footy normally, lets say Richmond oval, people on the outer are spread out anyway. If we had members only, it would be simple to keep a few feet away from others. Families can sit together as normal.The Grandstand would have to have some kind of distance ruling. Ok, we won't get thousands packing in, but it's a start. You will get only a small crowd but at least it's something.
Also it might encourage supporters to buy / renew a membership for their club. Money all clubs desperately need.

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Post by TAAARS on Fri May 01, 2020 10:28 am

Good idea. You could also include the clubroom in my opinion. Simply make members sign in at the door and any outbreak is easily traced.

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Post by Thiele on Sun May 03, 2020 6:48 pm

SANFL CEO Jake Parkinson urges fans to show support for clubs by buying a membership.
The SANFL’s chief executive is urging fans to become members to help their clubs survive – as the league proposes holding games across one weekend at Adelaide Oval.
The Advertiser
Michael McGuire,
Sunday, 3rd May, 2020
'Adelaide Oval Plan for SANFL Match Return'
Membership numbers across the SANFL have dropped 17 per cent from last season and league chief executive Jake Parkinson is urging fans to sign up as the likelihood of football resuming increases.
Mr Parkinson said some SANFL clubs were on a financial “knife edge’’ because the suspension of the season had caused revenue streams to dry up.
“The more members that are around the better the football club is,’’ he said.
“If there are supporters out there who have never been a member of their club and they can financially have the financial wherewithal to jump on board and be a member, now is the time,’’ he said.
Mr Parkinson said the SANFL was “committed” to making sure all eight SANFL clubs survived the COVID-19 crisis.
“There are a number of them which are on the knife edge,’’ he said. “Particularly as we don’t know when the revenue streams will come back.
“The SANFL will need to be in support of some clubs which will also have a large impact on our organisation,’’ he said.
Mr Parkinson said the SANFL would need to take on more debt to ensure some clubs survived, even though its own revenue streams had collapsed because there was no AFL football being played at Adelaide Oval.
He said it was not yet possible to predict when football could return but he was increasingly confident it would.
Mr Parkinson said the financial costs of restarting would have to be understood, especially if fans were not allowed to attend.
He said if there was no match day revenue then costs would need to be stripped out and that could include players not being paid, as well as other staff including assistant coaches and umpires.
“All those costs of putting on a match would need to be waived by the people who receive it,’’ he said.
The SANFL has submitted a proposal to SA Health asking advice on whether it would be safe to hold multiple games over a weekend at Adelaide Oval.
“We have put a proposal that quite possibly, if there were no AFL games at Adelaide Oval, could we play all of our round of SANFL footy at Adelaide Oval back-to-back across Saturday and Sunday,’’ he said.
“It means we have a more controlled environment to ensure the health and safety of everybody.’’
Mr Parkinson said the plan was dependant on how the AFL structured the rest of its season and the Oval not being needed by Port Adelaide or Adelaide. If Adelaide Oval was ruled out because of AFL commitments, Mr Parkinson said the SANFL could base its games at a club ground.
The SANFL will make a decision on the season by the end of the month, but Mr Parkinson said the shut down had shown how important the game was to people.
“I think it has shown what is at the core of footy and I think that has been a good thing.’’


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Post by Lee Harradine on Tue May 05, 2020 4:11 pm

Lee Harradine
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Post by Oldfella on Tue May 05, 2020 6:43 pm

Well done by the Club & President

Life long passionate supporter

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Post by RODH2 on Tue May 05, 2020 7:33 pm

Thanks for putting up the video.

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Post by Lachlan on Tue May 05, 2020 9:54 pm

It’s good the President is keeping us informed.

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Post by Lee Harradine on Sat May 09, 2020 10:33 am


9 May 2020


SANFL has received State Government approval for a structured return to training in groups of 10 for SANFL and Community Football, with on field training to commence under strict protocols from Monday, May 18.

The first phase for football’s return from this Monday (May 11) will be to plan, implement and communicate to members hygiene protocols and enable the delivery of an education program to all 257 SANFL and community clubs across the State. This is to ensure clubs undertake the necessary preparations for returning to play in a COVID-19 environment.

Following the Government’s announcement of the easing of COVID-19 restrictions in South Australia, SANFL has been advised by SA Health and the Office of Recreation, Sport and Racing that senior and junior football teams are permitted to train in three groups of 10 divided across three areas of an oval under strict conditions. (see oval diagram below)

SANFL Chief Executive Officer Jake Parkinson said despite outdoor sport training for groups of 10 being allowed from Monday, it was imperative for football – the most participated club sport in South Australia – to return in a structured and safe manner to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 community transmission.

“Appreciating that we have some 54,000 registered club players in the State with a minimum of 20 players in every football team – together with the number of teams at each club – it’s important to return to play under strict guidelines and protocols which ensure the health and safety of participants and the broader football community,” he said.

“Furthermore, we have to consider that many of our dedicated volunteers at football clubs are in the vulnerable cohort and therefore are at a greater risk of serious illness if they are infected with coronavirus.

“Measured and controlled SA Health-approved return to play protocols are therefore the responsible and only way to ensure football has the opportunity to return to normality with a continuous season.”

SANFL earlier this week submitted a comprehensive Return to Play document to the State Government, developed in accordance with the AIS Framework for Rebooting Sport in a Post COVID-19 Environment as well as the Federal Government National Guidelines for the Resumption of Sport and Recreation activities.

The protocols outlined in the document, now approved by the Government, for a return to football training under the current ‘Level B’ AIS framework include:

• Club staff and medical officials (including trainers) required to undertake COVID-19 infection control training in advance of training returning.

• Mandatory education briefings in advance of training returning for all players/coaches/staff/officials at every club to outline protocols.

• Applying the AIS framework principle of ‘get in, train and get out’, with no access to changerooms, gyms or wet areas.

• Temperature checks of all participants before training

• Training (both SANFL and community football) to be conducted in groups of 10 across three divided areas on the oval. The groups are not to mix or cross over at any time.

• Training activities to be non-contact and social distancing of 1.5 metres between coaches/players/club officials required at all times.

• Limited use of equipment with sanitised footballs allocated to each player during ball drills

• Stringent hygiene practices to be applied, including no sharing of towels/water bottles/food.

Mr Parkinson said he acknowledged that the return to play under strict protocols would be a significant undertaking for all clubs, especially small community clubs, but was essential to ensure the protection of their communities.

“Our grassroots community clubs undoubtedly still have a very challenging time ahead of them, which is why we need return to training in a timeframe to ensure they can do this effectively,” he said.

“However, SANFL will provide as much support and resourcing as we possibly can to educate and assist clubs, to ensure they have the capabilities to implement these protocols and get their players back on the field and re-connect local communities.”

Mr Parkinson said he was pleased that the State Government and SA’s Chief Public Health Officer, Professor Nicola Spurrier, had recognised the importance of local sport resuming in a controlled manner.

“Resumption of community football can contribute many health, economic, social and cultural benefits to South Australia as it emerges from the COVID-19 environment,” he said.

“There are also the physical and mental wellbeing benefits for participants – men, women, boys and girls – across regional and metropolitan South Australia, along with their coaches, plus more than 2,500 umpires and members of over 250 community clubs.”

SANFL will continue the process of consultation with SA Health and the Office of Recreation Sport and Racing for commencement of competitive training followed by matches from June 8 onwards, understanding the current restrictions will be groups of 20 people.

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