Early call on footy rules

South Western Times - - Sport -

A de­ci­sion on which of the AFL’s new rules that will be im­ple­mented into coun­try foot­ball will be made early next year, ac­cord­ing to WA Coun­try Foot­ball League gen­eral man­ager Joe Ge­or­giades.

The AFL re­cently re­vealed nine new rules and in­ter­pre­ta­tions which would be im­ple­mented into the top league next year, in­clud­ing changes to the ruck, hands-in-the­back rule and the en­force­ment of set playing po­si­tions at cen­tre bounces.

The WACFL does not al­ways copy the same rules as the AFL, with nei­ther the de­lib­er­ate out-of­bounds nor the now-de­funct sub­sti­tute rules be­ing used.

Mr Ge­or­giades said the league’s board would as­sess the new rules and make a de­ci­sion be­fore the start of next sea­son.

“We try to get as much con­sis­tency as we can across the 25 coun­try leagues and keep it as sim­i­lar to the AFL as pos­si­ble,” he said.

“We will see what comes down from the AFL and con­sult with the WAFC um­pir­ing depart­ment (be­fore a de­ci­sion is made).”

Many of the new rules set by the AFL have been put for­ward to try to limit con­ges­tion in the game, some­thing which Ge­or­giades ac­knowl­edged was not as preva­lent in the coun­try game.

Ge­or­giades said each re­gion had an um­pire co­or­di­na­tor who would be in charge of mak­ing sure the game’s of­fi­cials were well pre­pared.

“It is about how quickly we can get train­ing to our um­pires,” he said.

“It’s not ideal, but it is how foot­ball at com­mu­nity level works.

“(If there were changes) we would send an email to the leagues and clubs be­fore the sea­son.”

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