Tungamah will go with AFL

March 09, 2018

Tungamah looks poised to become the first Picola District Football Netball League south-east division club to breakaway from the competition.

After the league’s decision to cut ties with AFL Goulburn Murray, Tungamah met last night to finalise a decision to remain affiliated with the sport’s governing body.

Speaking before the meeting had taken place, club president Troy Costigan said the support of AFL GM was something the club couldn’t move away from.

‘‘We’ve got another meeting (last night), but at the moment we just want to be affiliated,’’ he said.

‘‘We had a meeting last week and decided that we want to stick with AFL Goulburn Murray.’’

Costigan said the benefits of staying — including talent pathways and funding — made affiliation the club’s only option.

The league’s decision means promising young Picola league talents will no longer play for TAC Cup side Murray Bushrangers and won’t be part of academy programs, with regional general manager Martin Gleeson citing insurance ramifications as the main reason.

‘‘The main reasons are the talent pathways — the opportunity to play with the Murray Bushrangers,’’ Costigan said.

‘‘We’ve got a young fella (Nick Irvine) in the squad at the moment and that’s important to us.

‘‘Also the funding from the AFL, we’d miss all that funding and we’re at the stage as a club where we need to upgrade, and missing the funding would mean that wasn’t possible.

‘‘Those are the two big issues for us.’’

Costigan wouldn’t speculate on the chances his club would be taking a minority stance as one of few clubs to affiliate.

‘‘I’m pretty sure a lot of clubs are on the fence at the moment, but I can’t speak for other clubs,’’ he said.

‘‘It’s nothing against the league, but we just can’t afford to leave.’’

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