IN one of the biggest shake ups the competition has seen, Group 10 clubs will have to rely more on their “local juniors” rather than imported players after officials voted for the implementation of a 21-point salary cap.
The decision was made at the Group 10 annual general meeting at Bathurst Panthers on Sunday.
Still set to undergo some pre-season tweaking, the system will hinge on how many points an imported player will carry.
That will be largely determined by the calibre of the player.
Returning president Linore Zamparini said the idea behind the salary cap-style system was for clubs to use more locally-based players who came through the club’s junior ranks.
“It has been implemented but there is still a bit of tweaking involved,” he said.
“We want clubs to utilise their juniors more than anything rather than import five or six players.
“Everyone likes seeing their juniors play, they don’t want to see them sitting on the bench.”
There are exceptions, however, with the longer an imported player stays at the club the lower his point value becomes.
In Orange CYMS’ case, someone like captain-coach Mick Sullivan would be virtually classed as a local junior having played in green and gold now since 2010.
“Clubs will get a 25 per cent discount every year that imported player stays at the club,” Zamparini said.
Based on 2013 rosters, Mudgee will be impacted greatly by the system.
Former NRL backrower Jack Afamasaga, former Fijian international Iowane Divavesi, and ex-NSW Cup players Brent Rae-Millar and Karlos Filiga all played at Glen Willow last season under the guidance of Mat Stott.
“We did the sums and they were the highest,” Zamparini said.
In other general business items, all clubs have nominated four sides (premier league, first division, under 18s and league tag), with the exception of Blackheath who nominated three teams (no first grade).
Total prizemoney has been increased by nearly 20 per cent to $26,000.
A draft draw will be released in the next month.
Lithgow mentor Graeme Osborne selected as Group 10 first grade and Nick Lander under 18s coaches.
Former Orange Hawk, Mudgee Dragon and Bathurst Panther William Kennedy was honoured with life membership.