Terang Express
Bloods’ youngsters keen for round one

AN AIR of excitement surrounds Terang Mortlake’s junior footballers and netballers ahead of the competitive return of their chosen sports this Saturday.

The Bloods’ under 18.5, 16, 14 and 12 football teams and the 17, 16, 15, 13 and 12 and under netball sides will kick off their 2020 seasons against Cobden at Cobden Community Bank Recreation Reserve.

It will be the first game of a nine round season, which will run each Saturday until September 19, with the start of the junior season coming more than three months after the original scheduled start date.

After cancelling its senior seasons, the Hampden Football Netball League (HFNL) opted to focus on its junior competitions and combined the Saturday-Sunday run competitions into one for this season.

Hampden league clubs have worked diligently in recent months to implement stringent protocols for a return of training and competition, with the competition to run subject to Victorian Government advice as well as AFL Victoria guidelines.

Terang Mortlake acting general manager Michael Williams said the Bloods were looking forward to seeing football and netball at local level once again.

“There is an air excitement around now that a start is in sight,” he said.

“There’s been a fair bit of work put in at committee level to have all the protocols in place and to set up the facility to how it needs to be.

“I think for the majority of the kids, they’re all excited to get out there and have a kick with their mates.”

The season will return under a number of protocols including no canteens, no entrance fees, no raffles and no changing rooms except for emergencies and toilet facilities,  and showers when required in bad weather.

According to government regulations, spectators may attend matches although AFL Victoria recommends only those necessary to support the running of matches such as parents, coaches, players, medical staff and officials should attend.

Those in attendance must abide by social distancing guidelines and congregate in groups of no more than 10 and remain in vehicles where appropriate.