Clubs con­cerned with field al­lo­ca­tion

Auckland City Harbour News - - PUBLIC NOTICES - TORIKA TOKALAU-CHAN­DRA

There’s a grow­ing need to re­assess sport­ing field al­lo­ca­tions, a prom­i­nent Auck­land foot­ball club says.

Cen­tral United chair­man Ivan Vuk­sich says for years, they have begged Auck­land Coun­cil for just that.

One of the top foot­ball clubs in Auck­land, with over 60 teams and 800 mem­bers, Cen­tral United is al­lo­cated one ded­i­cated field at San­dring­ham by the coun­cil.

Vuk­sich says this is be­com­ing un­sus­tain­able for the club who fork out more than $65,000 ev­ery year for al­ter­na­tive so­lu­tions.

‘‘We’ve been all over the place - we hire out One­hunga High School, St Peter’s Col­lege where we train and host games. And a pri­vate field on McLeod Rd.

‘‘We keep telling the coun­cil for years that we need more field al­lo­ca­tion and while they sym­pa­thise with us, all they can say is that there is just a gen­eral short­age of fields.’’

Auck­land Coun­cil’s man­ager of sports parks Grant Jen­nings con­firmed there is in­suf­fi­cient field time avail­able to cater for the needs of sports clubs, es­pe­cially over the win­ter.

‘‘Fields are cur­rently al­lo­cated based on his­tor­i­cal needs and use but we are mov­ing to a ‘ needs anal­y­sis’ ap­proach for win­ter 2017,’’ Jen­nings says.

‘‘This means the num­ber of fields al­lo­cated will be based on the ac­tual num­ber of teams that a club needs to field on a Satur­day.

‘‘Each team is pro­vided with a fixed time for train­ing per week, with or with­out lights, and 11th grade and above are al­lo­cated fields with lights. The over­all need is tal­lied to pro­vide the to­tal train­ing needs for the club for that sea­son.

‘‘At present, this ex­cludes the clubs’ needs for their acad­emy or elite teams as we have in­suf­fi­cient field time to cater for these ex­tra teams.’’

Pon­sonby Rugby’s past club pres­i­dent and for­mer All Black Bryan Wil­liams voiced his dis­ap­point­ment over the state of their West­ern Springs outer fields. The club has over 60 teams.

‘‘The outer fields at West­ern Springs are of­ten closed by coun­cil for train­ing and play­ing. The drainage is poor.

‘‘Most of our teams be­tween the ages of un­der-6 and un­der-13. It is a big lo­gis­ti­cal ex­er­cise when grounds get closed. A lot of play­ers lose out on their sport.’’

Wil­liams says since 2002, they have asked the coun­cil to rem­edy the sit­u­a­tion.

PHOTO: PHOTOTEK

Cen­tral Utd are one of the top foot­ball clubs in Auck­land.

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