With the Queensland border currently closed, AFL Queensland have elected to only release the first three weeks of matches for the QFA Division 2 men’s competition.
With four of the competition’s twelve teams domiciled in NSW, the first three rounds have been structured to avoid any cross border travel. This fixturing approach allows for the competition to be split in two, should the border remain closed beyond August 1.
The four NSW based clubs will be eagerly awaiting the border opening, as they embark on their first season playing in a combined SEQ/NSW competition, having previously played in their own localised Northern Rivers League.
2019 QFA Division 2 premier, Bond University, will have to wait until Round 2 before they can unveil their premiership flag. While, Byron Bay will host Lismore in Round 1 when they hoist their 2019 Northern Rivers premiership flag.
AFL Queensland State Manager – Senior Football Operations, Barry Gibson, said the border issue was at the forefront of the fixturing.
“Notwithstanding the border restriction which we have no control over, its important we do whatever we can to have the competition go forward with all twelve teams, hence the decision to only release the first three rounds.
“We remain optimistic that by August 1, the border will be open, however we recognise there are no guarantees, so we have a contingency in place that means all twelve teams still get to play footy this season,” Gibson said.
The season commences on July 11. All clubs will play eight regular season games, followed by a top six finals series that concludes with the Grand Final on September 19.