Point­ing to a level field

Canning Times - - SPORT -

THE WA Am­a­teur Foot­ball League will fol­low Vic­to­rian and South Aus­tralian com­mu­nity leagues’ foot­steps to in­tro­duce a player points sys­tem in 2019 in a bid to re­duce the in­cen­tive to pay play­ers.

In May, the WAAFL Board re­leased rec­om­men­da­tions for a sys­tem that lim­its player in­duce­ments to change clubs and re­duce the pay­ment of play­ers, for clubs to pro­vide feed­back.

Rec­om­men­da­tions in­clude that the sys­tem ap­plies to men’s league grades from A down to C4. The points will be de­ter­mined on the first WAAFL club the player played for prior to play­ing at an­other se­nior club and whether the player is yet to play a WAAFL match.

An­other rec­om­men­da­tion was that a team which ex­ceeded the to­tal team points cap or makes a false or in­cor­rect dec­la­ra­tion re­gard­ing a player’s point al­lo­ca­tion would lose the match and be pe­nalised for play­ing an in­el­i­gi­ble player. A PPS pri­mar­ily re­stricts clubs from play­ing a higher num­ber of elite play­ers.

This is achieved by each player be­ing as­signed points based on their pre­vi­ous play­ing his­tory within a to­tal team points’ cap.

Gen­eral man­ager David Arm­strong said the league started look­ing at a PPS in 2015 in re­sponse to club feed­back about play­ers al­legedly be­ing paid, which was against the rules.

How­ever, he was un­sure about the range of pay­ments.

“The player points con­cept is now be­ing ex­plored by the WA Foot­ball Com­mis­sion at a whole of foot­ball level – in­clud­ing the WA Coun­try Foot­ball League and the WAAFL,” he said.

“There are many ru­mours of play­ers be­ing paid in the WAAFL. How­ever, in the last five years only three clubs have been found through our in­tegrity in­ves­ti­ga­tions to have breached our am­a­teur sta­tus.”

The sys­tem was not linked to any salary cap, as the league re­mained as an am­a­teur com­pe­ti­tion, which ef­fec­tively had no salary cap.

He said ben­e­fits of a PPS were in­creased trans­parency in re­cruit­ment, clubs were en­cour­aged to de­velop and re­tain lo­cal play­ers and AFL and WAFL play­ers were en­cour­aged to return to their orig­i­nal am­a­teur club.

The league is also propos­ing to change its name to the Perth Footy League.

“The WAAFL has trans­formed from a six team se­nior men’s com­pe­ti­tion in 1922 to now be 175 se­nior men’s, 51 colts, 16 se­nior women’s and nine all abil­i­ties teams,” Mr Arm­strong said. PENRHOS Col­lege stu­dents Olivia Kennedy, Mia Fleck­ham­mer and Ge­or­gia Grose will not only rep­re­sent their school but also WA at the Aus­tralian In­ter­school Eques­trian Na­tional Cham­pi­onships.

Kennedy (13), who has been rid­ing for eight years, has been se­lected for the sec­ondary 90cm and 100cm jump­ing events.

Fleck­ham­mer (13) and Grose (16) will par­tic­i­pate in a va­ri­ety of dres­sage events.

“Horse rid­ing is not a pop­u­lar sport so it has been re­ally great to be sup­ported by and be able to rep­re­sent Penrhos and do what we love,” Fleck­ham­mer said.

Grose, who is in Year 11, said it would be her first na­tional event and the last she would be able to take part in due to ex­ams.

“I got into horse rid­ing be­cause of my cousin and aunty who was a coach for the Para-Olympics,” she said.

The cham­pi­onships will be held at the Wer­ribee Park Na­tional Eques­trian Cen­tre in Vic­to­ria from Oc­to­ber 1 to 5.

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