AUSTRALIAN Football League NSW/ACT state operating and major projects manager Joseph La Posta believes the challenge the GWS Giants face is sharing the love throughout the largest zone if AFL football.
The central west is an obvious potential growth area for Aussie Rules, but with Western Sydney, Broken Hill, Wentworth, Canberra, Wagga Wagga, Albury, Deniliquin, Griffith and the South Coast also demanding attention it’s impossible to satisfy everyone’s needs.
Currently performing two road shows a year throughout the region, the Giants are taking baby steps when it comes to making an AFL footprint in the region.
But baby steps could soon become giant leaps should Wade Park be deemed suitable for both NAB Cup fixtures or NEAFL (North Eastern AFL) matches, opening the door for Orange to become the hub of Aussie Rules in the area.
La Posta believes there is potential there, but it’ll all hinge on whether the AFL deems the ground suitable for such a use.
“No doubt. The AFL is always looking to establish community partnerships and the central west is definitely part of that,” he said.
“One of the big challenges for the Giants at the moment is the size of their zone. We’re taking games to Wagga, Canberra, Coffs Harbour, Newcastle ... it’s important to look at the areas with the potential for the most growth.
“I think all of NSW is growing. The club takes road shows out to the central west twice a year and this year I believe our general manager (and former Geelong skipper) Tom Harley went out to the area.
“In terms of taking games to the area, we’d have to weigh up a few things.
“We’d have to look at the venue and determine whether the facility was suitable for pre-season games, whether or not we’d be able to get the crowd.”