Ilett temporarily departs Tongala

By Andrew Johnston

Cam Ilett has left Tongala Football Club — for now.

After a brilliant season with the Blues last year, Ilett was to return for this campaign.

However border issues have made that impossible for the time being and has led to Ilett joining Rovers Football Club in the Central Australian Football League.

Tongala coach Jordan Souter said Ilett spoke to the club about the opportunity to play football while Murray Football League was on delay.

"Cam approached us about having a kick up there for the time being,” Souter said.

"It's something he's always wanted to do, so while our league isn't playing and there is an opportunity for him to be playing, we were happy for him to do so.

"Cam has committed to us for next year and told us if we do get up and he is able to get back with flight changes, he wants to come back and play with us this season.

"He's a great player, he's added a lot to the club and we love that he wants to be a part of Tongala long term.

"It's not just an issue for Cam, it's still going to be hard for all our Darwin boys to get back if we are able to play, so we will address it if the season does get off the ground.”

Souter said Tongala was not opposed to players finding opportunities to take the field, especially if the Murray league was unable to start its season.

"There are guys around this club who are willing to wait through this situation, the more senior guys who would prefer to play, but will hold on,” he said.

"But there are other guys, particularly your younger players, who just want to be out there playing football. If guys want to play, we aren't going to stop them.

"We want them to take their chances, it's hard to potentially sit out an entire year and we don't know what kind of impact so much time out is going to have on their development.”

The Murray league remains committed to holding a season, though has not nominated a planned start date.

Another club in the league will be without one of its best players, although this move is more permanent.

Numurkah's Mitch Price has relocated to northern NSW and will not be returning to play for the Blues.

"To the big fella who has been a fantastic person to have round our club for the past five years and also a ripping ruckman we wish you well,” the club posted on Facebook.

"But most importantly we as a whole club thank you for (your) contribution and your loyalty that you have (displayed) around our club for the past five years.”