Will Blayney be a sporting free zone this winter?

As the NRL steals the limelight with its campaign to see rugby league return, Blayney clubs of all codes are struggling to understand just where, when and how they'll complete a season.

The various codes may be able to formulate a game plan for the where and when, but it's the how that is now perplexing our local clubs, and has introduced a whole new level of complexity for Blayney Shire Council.

Council's role with the local rugby league and rugby union sides has always been straightforward.

The clubs reserve King George Oval for their home games and then supply the volunteers that run the events from taking the money at the gate, through to running the canteens, filling the water bottles and cleaning up afterwards.

Council maintains the buildings and infrastructure and waters, mows and marks the playing surfaces.


COVID-19 though now means that council will need to work with the clubs to determine safe playing procedures at each of the grounds.

President of the Blayney Rams Craig Gosewich said that although playgrounds and areas such as the skate park can be opened for use by individuals and small groups, grounds such as KGO require extra input to make them workable for a large crowd and group sport.

"They have to have all the precautions in place such as the hand washing stations, the social distancing signs, one-way routing at places like the canteen and have it all cleaned properly at the end of the day," he said.

For their part the clubs are responsible for implementing the Sports Australia Return to Sport toolkit.

"We have to nominate and train a COVID-19 safety coordinator, get some people to act as marshals during the games as well as create an attendance register during training," Mr Gosewich said.

Council's director of infrastructure services Grant Baker said that council will meet with the clubs on Tuesday to explain the public health order in more detail, outline each groups responsibilities and hopefully allow the clubs to make a decision regarding the 2020 competition.

"We have our responsibilities in this situation, and the clubs have their responsibilities," he said.

"For the likes of rugby union though that will be really difficult for them because of the number of volunteers that they have.

"So that will be one of the things that will help them make a decision."