Junior rugby league match between the Cairns Redlynch Razorbacks and Bowen Seagulls from 1300 Smiles Stadium. Seagulls’ Elizabeth Tait. Picture: Zak Simmonds
Junior rugby league match between the Cairns Redlynch Razorbacks and Bowen Seagulls from 1300 Smiles Stadium. Seagulls’ Elizabeth Tait. Picture: Zak Simmonds

‘Logistical nightmare’: Bowen Seagulls face uncertainty

AS MORE COVID-19 restrictions are lifted, many sports clubs are beginning to think logistically about how training and games will proceed and for some, the future is looking grim.

Despite having ticked off all of the Return to Play COVIDsafe protocols necessary, Bowen Seagulls Junior Rugby League Club says they are "stuck between a rock and a hard place" and facing a very uncertain future.

Having already paid their insurance for the season, the club will only be able to receive an 80 per cent refund if the season doesn't go ahead.

If the season does go ahead, however, they'll be limited in what they can do to make money, meaning they risk starting off next year with no money for the club, Bowen Seagulls secretary Monika Piggott said.

"We're only allowed 100 people at the venue at a time, which means between games we'd have to get everybody out, have 15 minutes to clean everything and then get another 100 people in, I don't know if we even have the volunteers for that," she said.

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"It'll be a logistical nightmare.

"We can't open the canteen and we won't make any money at the gate. I think the club will be in the red if the season does go ahead, and we'll start next year with no money for the club.

"We want the kids on the field but we are stuck between a rock and a hard place."

Mrs Piggot said the QRL had decided not to extend the season and had limited it to one parent per player allowed into venues to watch the games.

"QRL aren't extending the season, so they'll only get about eight games in now," she said.

"Townsville don't want to come down here for that, so it'll be up to the coaches and the players if they want to travel, to go all the way to Townsville every week.

"Only one parent per child is allowed, so the other has to sit in the car."

The club will be meeting tonight to discuss plans for the future, and are awaiting further directives from QRL later in the month.

Mrs Piggott said the "best case scenario" was if the government were able to lift the 100 people per venue restriction, but even that wouldn't cement the future of this season.

"We've done everything we can, we were the first club to follow all the protocols," she said.

"We are trying our best but it's just so unknown."


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