Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Finals hosts for Picola Football league finals drawn

Picola and District Football and Netball League has finalised host clubs for the next eight seasons’ finals series.

JESSICA GRIMBLE January 17, 2013 4:00am

Picola and District Football and Netball League has finalised host clubs for the next eight seasons’ finals series.

New president Shane Railton said the finals draw, from season 2013 to 2020, aimed to give each club a fair chance of hosting a finals match.

Teams that host a preliminary or grand final do not host a finals encounter the following season.

‘‘Our finals sometimes make $20000 for the home club. This (draw) is to try and level the playing field,’’ Railton said.

‘‘Everyone will host six finals in eight years.

‘‘This allows them to host the final — but it doesn’t mean they have to have the final on their home ground.

‘‘In the south-east division the final must be on a south-east ground, but the north-west division can have finals on any Picola League ground.’’

Railton said this season’s draws were structured to increase rivalries in the first and final four rounds. The north-west division will play the same draw in 2014 with venues reversed.

Shepp East returns to defend its premiership title in the south-east division and Jerilderie will look to further success after winning the north-west division premiership last season.

Railton said there were some good improvers approaching the new competition year.

‘‘Katamatite are going through the process of knocking down buildings and building new ones,’’ Railton said.

‘‘Strathmerton are looking quite strong and Berrigan is looking quite strong again, which is good for the league.’’

Railton said the board chose to run separately from the GM Regional Administration Centre this season. He said the league’s junior development program was a priority — and because it was already strong, the board deemed inclusion in the centre not appropriate.

‘‘We don’t believe there is good enough information available for us to make that decision,’’ he said.

‘‘It means a number of changes in the administration of leagues — but we are pretty fortunate in that we have a very good junior development program, so we are not as critical as some others (in joining the centre).

‘‘For others it would be a real boost; but for us there is no real advantage for our junior development.’’

Railton said the league would host practice matches — with south-east clubs to play north-west clubs. It will feature one football and one netball side per club, but Railton said it was not compulsory. Details will be finalised soon.

Railton takes on the top job from his previous role as junior development officer.

Tegan Jessup, Michael Fleming and Dennis Brooks also join the board for the first time and Vicky Sutton will return after leave.

North-west vice-president Brian Henderson, south-east president Sandy Dickie and board members Kevin Hanson, Faye Cook, Debbie Nicholls and Ian Gillett were returned to their positions.

Draws for south-east and north-west divisions of Picola and District Football and Netball League appear on page 16 of Wednesday's Cobram Courier.

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