The Central West's footballers are no closer to knowing when they'll be back on the paddock, but the AFL Central West isn't expecting its expanded competition to take a hit to player numbers.
A set of guidelines marking a comprehensive return to training was due to be sent to clubs this week, with a May 25 date set for a virtual catchup with club presidents to further discuss a return to season 2020.
The season was supposed to begin the weekend before Easter, but was put on hold alongside all other national and community competitions due to coronavirus.
The AFLCW had grand plans to return to a two-tiered competition in 2020 and while the proposal is still on the cards, the league will need to consult with clubs about its viability when the government allows training to resume.
The Orange Tigers would be one of two clubs adding an additional side to the competition alongside the Bathurst Bushrangers, with the former having one team in each of first grade and reserve grade and the latter having one top tier side and two second tier outfits.
AFL NSW and ACT regional manager Rebecca Marshall, who oversees the AFLCW, said the league would touch base on the number of teams and structure of the competition before any potential restart but was confident the league wouldn't see a hit in player numbers due to the pandemic.
"We have advised clubs that at this point the nominations clubs have made for teams will remain but there will be an opportunity for each club to reconfirm these once we have finalised the return to play date," Marshall said.
"The feedback we have been receiving is that players are really keen to get out and play footy once permitted so we are optimistic the demand will be there and the number of teams will remain the same across the two tiers."
The AFL was expected to provide guidelines surrounding a return to community sport this week but has been caught up trying to organise the national competition, with South Australia and Western Australia both refusing to budge on quarantine periods for visiting sides.
The return to community sport will be dealt with on a state-by-state basis for Australian rules competitions, with NSW current at level A of the three-level plan.
Marshall said competitions across NSW would be guided by the Australian Institute of Sport guidelines, with level A allowing training sessions of 10 or fewer, but no shared use of equipment such as footballs or equipment.
Level B would allow ball skills work but no contact.
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