Western Victoria Female Football Leagues coaches confident of a return in 2020

OUTTA MY WAY: South Warrnambool's Stella Bridgewater, who also plays for NAB League club GWV Rebels, in action last season. Picture: Morgan Hancock
OUTTA MY WAY: South Warrnambool's Stella Bridgewater, who also plays for NAB League club GWV Rebels, in action last season. Picture: Morgan Hancock

LEADERS are confident female football can return in the south-west this year despite the COVID-19 break.

Coaches believe the Western Victoria Female Football League's shorter season format, lack of expenses and ability to work with crowd restrictions will give it every possibility to play in 2020.

AFL Victoria has announced sanctioned club training, in groups of 10, can resume on Monday, May 25.

The WVFFL was to feature 12-round under 18 and women's competitions this year.

South Warrnambool under 18 girls coach Chris Meade said there were opportunities to consolidate female football in the region and they would "jump at the chance to play".

"We are hopeful. We don't have the crowds like the senior (men's) do which is one plus and our expenses to play aren't there," he said.

"Financially for the club it would be OK for us to proceed. In previous years we had 10 rounds.

"As the year progresses, we could probably squeeze our season in I think, I really do.

"Even if we reduced it to eight or six plus finals that would be great. Just to get on the park would be a plus."

South Warrnambool women's coach Brenton O'Rourke is cautiously optimistic about getting a season in too.

"Fortunately for the women's side of things, it is in its infancy and it's highly agile," he said. "If there was enough interest to play each other once or have some form of modified type of season this year, just to keep the ball rolling, that would be great."

O'Rourke, who is waiting for training advice from the club, said "playing for the enjoyment" was important at all levels.

Warrnambool senior men's coach Matt O'Brien said it was important clubs supported female football's growth.

"Their season is quite short, six or eight games last year (in the women's), so they could still have their whole season ahead of them," he said.

"It has picked up momentum over the last couple of years and it would be good to maintain that."

This story Door left ajar for full female football seasons first appeared on The Standard.