High-ranking AFL NSW-ACT official Sam Chadwick has indicated changes are ‘most likely’ to occur in the Riverina footballing landscape as part of the current review.
Club forums have begun across the region as part of the next stage of David Burgess’ review into AFL Riverina’s competitions.
Barellan, Coleambally, Griffith, Leeton-Whitton and Narrandera were the first clubs to feature in the forums with Burgess on Sunday, as part of the review that is jointly commissioned by AFL NSW-ACT and AFL Riverina.
The club forums continued on Monday night and will go until February 20, when the last is scheduled to be conducted in Wagga.
Chadwick, AFL NSW-ACT state manager for football, policy and major projects, said the forums were an integral part of the review process.
“We really want to get an understanding of what the clubs want in more detail and get a handle on their issues and their longer term objectives,” Chadwick said.
“We’ve conducted a survey, which was really good. Every club participated, both junior and senior, and 700 individual stakeholders so that’s given us a heap of data, but survey’s are one thing and potentially there is a lot more detail behind that. Is that true? Why do you feel this way? It’s testing those insights...and hopefully at the end of the review we’ve got some real clarity on some things.
“It might mean there are some competing insights and we’ll have to make some judgement calls on what that will be ultimately, but at the moment this is just a process of listening to clubs and giving them an opportunity to express their views in a unstructured way, as opposed to the survey.”
Chadwick, who is part of the review working party, said there was ‘nothing groundbreaking’ among the results from the survey.
He did, however, suggest change is on the horizon.
“Ultimately there might be no changes but most likely we need to make changes to ensure the future sustainability of clubs and competitions longer term,” Chadwick said.
“We don’t know what they are yet but it’s about strategically planning for the future.
“At the end of the forums, we will sit down internally and essentially review the summary of the key insights that came from the face to face consultation.
“We will sit back, digest that, debate, consider it and thereafter we’ll pull together a summary of key insights and potential recommendations on the back of that.”