Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Mathoura Football Netball Club to front court on Thursday

The Mathoura Football Netball Club is attempting to place an injunction on the Picola and District Football Netball League north-west grand final.

TYLA HARRINGTON August 26, 2014 3:45am

A hearing has been scheduled with Melbourne Magistrates’ Court by the Mathoura Football and Netball Club this Thursday.

The club is attempting to place an injunction on the Picola and District Football Netball League north-west grand final.

The league made the decision to move the event to Yarroweyah after a long running debate about whether Mathoura’s grounds were up to scratch.

Immediately after the decision, the Mathoura club and Murray Shire Council announced they would pursue legal action to keep the September 6 event at Mathoura.

Although both parties are restricted in talking about the application, the Melbourne Magistrates’ Court website lists the nature of complaint as ‘equitable relief’.

It is defined as a ‘‘court-granted remedy that requires a party to refrain from performing a particular act’’.

It is understood if the application is passed, a court hearing date will be set.

Murray Shire Mayor Tom Weyrich, who will attend the court hearing, says he is determined to see the grand final returned to Mathoura.

He believes there is still enough time to have the recent decision to move the grand final reversed.

‘‘I just can’t understand why the league would want to punish the good people of Mathoura,’’ he said.

Cr Weyrich said he can see ‘‘no reason’’ why the grand final cannot be held in Mathoura.

The placement of two light poles around the netball courts is the only issue with the ground that that been made public.

PDFL president Shane Railton maintains the light poles are not the sole issue underlying the dispute, but will not go into detail about the other items.

‘‘Murray Shire has bent over backwards to accommodate the league,’’ Cr Weyrich said.

‘‘We’ve spent $90,000 in the last 12 months at the reserve. They say the light poles are too close to the court but as I am aware there are a lot of courts that do not comply.

‘‘I believe we need to have a ‘can do’ attitude not a ‘can’t do’ attitude.

‘‘We were told that the ground wasn’t up to scratch, there was an audit, and there were changes made.’’

Mr Railton told the Pastoral Times last week that the league ‘‘won’t be going back on that decision’’.

But Cr Weyrich says it is the right thing to do.

‘‘The Murray Shire general manager (Margot Stork) has spent days trying to rectify this or come up with a solution,’’ he said.

‘‘These people (the league decision makers) are playing with fire and they are about to be burnt.

‘‘Everyone is going to walk out with a black eye here and there’s no reason for any of this to happen.

‘‘He (Mr Railton) has said he doesn’t understand why Murray Shire is getting involved in the dispute, only to later say Moira Shire has already started works on their grounds and have agreed to meet all wishes.

‘‘It has to be one or the other.’’

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