Following AFL Victoria’s memo regarding the future structures of the WorkSafe AFL Victoria Community Championships and subsequent survey responses received from AFL Barwon member clubs, the AFL Barwon Commission has determined not to participate in Senior Male Representative Football in 2020.
Following the success of last year’s inaugural Senior Female Interleague match, a potential opportunity for this to continue in 2020 is being explored with other regions. AFL Barwon will actively support and provide opportunities at representative level in accordance with the needs and interest of the players, and as such will continue to provide these at the junior level.
AFL Barwon’s Junior Representative Netball program will continue as it has in previous years, aligning with the Netball Victoria Associations Championships. As there will be no Senior Male representative football in 2020, Netball will also not be participating in any representative matches over the May bye weekend. However, clubs and players will be consulted around potentially competing in the Netball Victoria Open Association Championship competition held in June.
In conjunction with the Geelong Cats, we will also continue to run the Under 14 and 15 Male & Female Next Generation Talent Academies in 2020. These are skill-based academies for talent identified participants taking place over a 12-week period in the middle of the season. The NGA Academies are the first introduction into the talent pathway for male and females in our region and align with the Under 15 V/Line Cup program that takes place in AFL Grand Final Week.
With the initial survey providing a broad range of views, further consultation with all relevant stakeholders will be ongoing to determine what direction our region wishes to pursue with all facets of representative Football and Netball, in which AFL Barwon enjoys a long and proud history.
The consultation will also seek the views of other Regions across the state, so a viable long-term Football and Netball representative structure may be adopted.