AFL NSW-ACT will wait to see whether they can apply to play under rules in the Public Health Order before making an official call on their seasons, billing it as their 'last Hail Mary' to keep hopes alive.
Any hopes of playing shortened two-week finals series in the Riverina and Farrer League looked dashed when deputy premier John Barilaro confirmed an 80 per cent double vaccination rate would need to be achieved for community sport to resume.
But AFL NSW-ACT's community football manager, for regional NSW and ACT, Marc Geppert, said they will wait to see whether the soon-to-be-released Public Health Order's major recreational facility provisions will include community sport.
The government issued a release on Thursday stating major recreational outdoor facilities, including stadiums, racecourses, theme parks and zoos, can reopen with one person per 4sqm, capped at 5,000 people.
Up to 500 people can also attend ticketed and seated outdoor events.
"AFL NSW-ACT is currently working with the NSW government's Office of Sport to understand what's going to be in the Public Health Order," Geppert said.
"Until we see what's in the Public Health Order we don't know what the impacts are on community sport yet, and more specifically if community sport can apply for the major recreational facility provision.
"As people would know we applied to play under that last year for our AFL Riverina Championship finals series.
"We're looking at whether or not we can apply for ticketed events, controlled seating and those type of things. At the moment, we don't have that clarity.
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"We don't know if we can apply for the major recreational facility component of it yet, because the press release from the government just didn't tell us that.
"It's our last Hail Mary to get finals played."
Geppert said they need to exhaust all possible avenues and solutions before making an official decision.
AFL Riverina issued a contingency plan to play finals last week, with its 'Plan A' giving clubs a week to train before playing semi finals next weekend.
"It's pretty clear community sport sounds like it's off in its normal setting. But our last Hail Mary is whether we can apply under the major recreational facility provision to play under more controlled circumstances," Geppert said.
"If that doesn't apply to community sport and only elite sport, then we understand that. But we need to ask the question."
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