BFNL Return to Play / Training

The McDonald's Ballarat FNL today announces the return to play and training for competitions across the BFNL after confirmation of the easing of restrictions.

Following yesterday's announcement that regional Victoria will move to different settings than metro Melbourne, the league has worked to put in place plans that will enable the return of junior football and netball from this weekend, while keeping a watching brief on senior competitions. 


With the ongoing popularity of the Western Bulldogs Under 9’s, it is determined to place this competition on hold until further clarity is provided around density limits and the ability of crowds to attend these games on Friday evenings. 

Games schedule from this Friday will be paused, with the opportunity available for the fixture to be extended into term three of the school year to maximise participation for the youngest age group in the league. 


  • Round seven of junior football and netball (30th May 2021) will be abandoned and not replayed or replaced. 
  • Round eight of junior football and netball (6th June 2021) will proceed as scheduled this weekend. 
  • Junior competitions will then continue to follow the existing fixture. 

BFLW YOUTH COMPETITIONS (Under 14 - Under 18) 

  • Round five of BFLW Youth (30th May 2021) will be rescheduled for the 25th of July 2021 where the full bye was due to be held. 
  • Round six of BFLW Youth will proceed as scheduled this weekend. 
  • BFLW competitions will then follow the existing fixture. 


Several protocols will be introduced for clubs and members to abide by from this weekend in line with health advice to allow competition to recommence. 

Some of these include: 

  • Due to limited density allowances, only one parent is permitted per child playing football / netball. 
  • Players will be advised to “arrive / play / leave” meaning they should arrive at the venue ready to play and leave at the completion of their game. 
  • Masks are not required outside unless 1.5m spacing cannot be maintained. Coaches, trainers, officials need to be aware that they should be wearing masks as they will not be deemed to be exercising and will end up inside the 1.5m spacing, based upon what has been seen last year and this. 


With the current setting that senior competitions can return to limited training, the league will take a “wait and watch” approach to how the football and netball competitions will return to play. 

The Ballarat FNL is in a unique position where there are three clubs within the metro boundaries and therefore have different settings to regional clubs. 

Considering the current advice, the following impacts will apply to the senior competition fixtures: 

  • Round seven and eight of senior football and netball will be abandoned at this stage and reconsidered as part of the fixture review to ensure equality and integrity of the competition for the balance of the season. 
  • Round five of BFLW Open (30th May 2021) will be rescheduled for the 25th of July 2021 where the full bye was due to be held. 
  • Round six of BFLW Open (6th June 2021) competition will be abandoned and not replayed/replaced. 

Given the short timeframe for further advice, NO games in any competition will be scheduled for the Queen’s Birthday weekend. 

The priority of the BFNL is to ensure that competition can take place in a safe environment that is supportive of members, players, and supporters. 


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