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Two Victorian clubs invited to return to South East SA footy amid major competition overhaul

Two Victorian clubs invited to return to South East SA footy amid major competition overhaul

Two Victorian football clubs have been approached to join a new league in South Australia’s South East, amid a major restructure to improve the sustainability of the sport in the region.

Key points:

  • Portland and Hamilton football clubs have been approached for an SA move
  • It comes as the SANFL plans a major restructure of local football in the South East
  • The Western Border Football League would welcome the introduction of Portland and other nearby clubs

The South Australian National Football League (SANFL) has been in contact with the Hampden Football Netball League’s (HFNL) Portland and Hamilton Kangaroos clubs to join one of the leagues set to be formed when the three existing South East competitions merge into two.

The SANFL announced the planned restructure of football in the region in May.

SANFL representatives met with Portland members, players, and supporters last week to discuss the proposed move with representatives from the Western Border Football League (WBFL) also in attendance.

The Mid South Eastern Football League is one of the three leagues that will be involved in the restructure.(Facebook: Nangwarry Football Club)

Portland Football Netball Club president Troy Bannam said the club’s general committee was split “50-50” about making the move.

“It’s probably grown a few more legs than I thought it was going to,” he said.

“We’re not taking the decision lightly and we’ll go through all the pros and cons and make an educated decision down the line.

“The other sides have to come in as well … I’m going to have to do a bit of work in the background with some other sides.”

League ‘excited’ for future

In an update to members, Hamilton Kangaroos chair Lachy Patterson said the club had received an initial phone call from the SANFL to gauge interest in joining a cross-border competition.

“This has not been discussed in depth at an executive level, the conversation has not progressed with the SANFL and, at this point in time, it is not a priority of ours to pursue,” he said.

“Our focus at this point in time is to ensure we transition through the remainder of this season and into season 2024.”

South East SA football is set for a major shake-up next season.(Supplied: Thomas Miles/TM Photography)

Both clubs joined the HFNL in 2013 from the WBFL, with the Hamilton Kangaroos being formed through a merger of the Hamilton and Hamilton Imperials football clubs.

WBFL president Michael Summers said the league was “excited to see what the SANFL come up with”.

“It would definitely be a good idea to get Portland back again,” he said.

“If we get Portland, we might get some other clubs around the district to join too.

“Western Border isn’t broken. We’re just looking for a restructure of the leagues here … and for better competition and more competition and sustainability for the future of football and netball here in the South East and western Victoria, including Casterton and Sandford.”

The SANFL declined to comment as it works through details around the South East restructure with clubs and leagues.

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Source: AFL NEWS ABC

    

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