Hospital pass on the Blackcats

“GROUP 10 should be making this decision, not the clubs.”

Orange CYMS president Ray Agland said Group 10 was passing responsibility for the reinstatement of the Blackheath Blackcats, and the decision could lead to clubs being made out as “the bad guy”.

After the nine other Group 10 clubs voted to expel the Blackcats from the competition at this year’s annual general meeting, Blackheath lodged an appeal and has since been informed if they can improve their ground conditions, put in plans for better crowd control, improve their junior base and install an action plan to ensure a premier league team is entered in 2016 the decision would then be voted on by the clubs, again.

Agland is unimpressed.

“The clubs already made this decision,” he said.

“Group 10 have put these provisions in place for Blackheath, so if they meet them and everything is good for them to return, then Group 10 should make the decision either way.

“I can’t see many clubs changing their mind if it comes back to us again.”

Agland outlined a simple way to make the decision, without forcing the decision on the clubs again.

“I seriously want to know if the officials have been asked of their opinion,” he said.

“They have to referee and touch judge the games, are they happy with the conditions? It’d be pretty easy. Group 10 puts the provisions in place, if Blackheath meets them get the clubs’ view on the matter, then ask the officials and then make the decision at Group level.”

CYMS committeeman Matt King was more candid on the situation, disputing the comparisons of Blackheath to Oberon and Blayney, two clubs that successfully reintroduced themselves to Group 10 premier league.

“We can’t keep comparing Blackheath to Blayney and Oberon,” he said.

“Blayney and Oberon are icons of the Group 10 competition, and have won premier league titles. They really only needed a push to be reinstated. Blackheath have never played in Group 10 before, and never won anything. They had issues with them last year [Blackheath under 18s were stripped of points for playing over age players], and they just don’t look like having a premier league team.

“I’m all for them playing in Group 10, but I think they’d be better off in the second division competition [Centennial Coal Cup].”

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