Limestone Coast country football leagues left ‘holding the ball’ on 2020 seasons in bid to reduce coronavirus effects Australia-wide

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DEFLATED: Football in the Limestone Coast has been deflated after the South Australian National Football League “strongly recommended” competitions be postponed until May 31.

FOOTBALL in the Limestone Coast will be on hold after a decision handed down late yesterday by the South Australian National Football League relating to the COVID-19 coronavirus.

SANFL announced the postponement of the 2020 Statewide Super Women’s League until May 31 and “strongly recommended” all community football competitions across South Australia also be postponed until that date.

The decision will see the start of the Western Border, Mid South East and Kowrree Naracoorte Tatiara leagues comply with that recommendation.

All three leagues have delayed the start of their seasons until May 31.

According to SANFL football coordinator South East Michael Mourbey, the finals series of the Limestone Coast Women’s Football League, set to start this Sunday, is also expected to be cancelled.

“It is national wide,” he said.

“They have suspended all country leagues.

“We have to do the right thing by all participants for their health and well being.”

In addition, SANFL has postponed the SANFL Juniors and NAB AFL Auskick until May 31.

The 2020 SANFL U16 Torrens University Cup, which started two weeks ago, has been cancelled.

The statement noted the decision is consistent with the earlier postponement of the men’s Statewide Super League and talent programs as a measure to reduce the risk of the virus spreading.

SANFL CEO Jake Parkinson said the health and well-being of fans, players, umpires, officials and communities has been the priority throughout the decision-making process.

He said SANFL club CEOs were supportive of the league’s decision to postpone the Women’s League competition, due to play Round 5 this weekend.

In line with a national decision on community football by the AFL, SANFL has recommended all affiliated leagues in SA cease any play until May 31, including training.

SANFL will continue to review these decisions based on the changing circumstances and advice from government and relevant health authorities.

“The recommendation to all affiliated leagues was collectively agreed upon due to the nature of shared public facilities across community football clubs and the health and safety of football’s volunteer network,” Parkinson said.

SANFL is continuing to work with all affiliated community football leagues to provide ongoing support during this extremely challenging time.

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