Spencer Gulf Football League makes return for 2020 season

A GRADE: Central Augusta's Tom Bolitho reaches for the ball.
A GRADE: Central Augusta's Tom Bolitho reaches for the ball.

With regional sport in the balance due to the coronavirus, the Spencer Gulf Football League has given the 2020 season the go ahead for July 4.

The back-flip decision comes after Premier Steven Marshall announced further easing of restrictions, which allows gatherings of up to 300 outdoors and up to 75 patrons seated indoors.

The 10 round season will consist of five clubs going head-to-head for the premiership title.

Lions and Port have joined West Augusta, Central Augusta and South Augusta to make the 2020 Spencer Gulf football season a reality.

A GRADE: South Augusta's Matt Downey has had a superb start to the season, which he continued in the Bulldog's win over premiership favourites PropRisden.

A GRADE: South Augusta's Matt Downey has had a superb start to the season, which he continued in the Bulldog's win over premiership favourites PropRisden.

Spencer Gulf Football League president Les Promnitz said despite fears of clubs losing players to Northern Areas, there were a number of factors that led to the final decision.

"When made our original decision we put in consideration for player and volunteer welfare and the lack of income that clubs would generate through their club rooms due to the restrictions," he said.

With easing of restrictions and clubs able to open up to serve meals, Mr Promnitz said there was no reason for the season not to go ahead.

"Once a number of those restrictions had changed, we had a number of players who still wanted to play football," he said.

"At the moment the maximum amount of people we can let in to our games is 500, but that includes players and volunteers that are not participating in the game.

"It is restrictive, but at least we can play footy."

Mr Promnitz said although footy was making a comeback, the community needed to comply with restrictions and was encouraged to do the right thing.

"We are going to have a lot of requirements placed upon the clubs and the league about social distancing and sanitisation," he said.

"We will not be allowing the public onto the oval at any time during matches.

"If we do not comply and the public does not comply, then they will shut us down."

Lions Football Club secretary Marc Congdon said there had been an outpouring of support received from players, volunteers and the wider community.

"Once we saw the restrictions were being lifted and we could actually raise money to support the club we thought it was a great idea to continue on," he said.

"I joked to someone out at training on Tuesday night that it was grand final week because we had about 35 players out there and we usually don't have that in the middle June when it is freezing cold.

"The players seem to be really excited and I think it is because we are ready to go and have a date set."

With the season set to commence in a matter of days, Mr Congdon said junior teams are still in need of players and support.

Budding under 15 footballers were encouraged to get on board for the 2020 season.

"If we didn't have support there is no way the season would have happened," he said.

"Come out, do the right thing and get your local footy fix."

RETURN: Local football players training for the upcoming 2020 Spencer Gulf Football League season.

RETURN: Local football players training for the upcoming 2020 Spencer Gulf Football League season.

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