Community football clubs cleared to train

Community football teams in Victoria and Tasmania will be allowed to recommence training in groups of 10 from May 25.

Clubs will ease back into modified training sessions, but are no closer to knowing when games can get underway.

“AFL Victoria will release its return to train protocols early next week and is endorsing a return to club sanctioned training from May 25,” AFL Victoria community football head Stephen O’Donohue said.

“Each state government is responsible for determining what level Australian football is in their state and approving when we can transition into the next stage.

“We will continue to work with the State Government to ensure alignment with their advice.”

Ten players will be able to train together in Victoria and Tasmania, with coaches and support staff not included as part of the total.

Two groups can train on a ground at the same time, but players will need to keep to their designated areas.

Despite training bans being lifted, extreme doubt lingers if any senior community leagues will stage games this year amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Country and suburban leagues and clubs have made it clear it would be financially impossible to operate if crowds are barred.

The Northern Territory will allow crowds at competitive sport from June 5, but most states have conceded it is likely fans will be locked out of games until at least late in the year.

Without gate takings, as well as revenue from food and drink sales, most clubs would run at a significant loss if games went ahead.

In Western Australia, community football training will be allowed from May 18 under “set conditions and protocols”.

South Australian clubs will be able to resume on Monday in groups of 10.

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