Wet Weather

TRAINING DAY PROCEDURES

If the Ground Closed sign is displayed you must not train on the fields. Sutherland Council has a wet weather line so you can check on the Ground's status: 9710 0105. 
NOTE: This wet weather line applies to weekdays ONLY. It does NOT apply to weekends. The Association makes the ruling for weekend games.

 

GAME DAY PROCEDURES
If the weather is poor then we will endeavour to update the website and our Facebook page with status as early as possible.

TEAM MANAGER'S should call the following people on game day AFTER 7:45am to see if games are on:

* Head Manager (Sat games only)

* Senior's Liaison Offficer (Sun games - AL & 35's)

* Women's Liaison Officer (Sun games - Women)

Please check the website for contact phone numbers. If you have an 8:00 am game you will have to assume the game is still on. Please do not call the clubhouse or the Secretary.  

Wet Weather - Use of Kareela Synthetic fields and Beyond

Please click here to read Kareela 2 & 3 criteria for use

As we are all aware, the long established wet weather procedure followed by the SSFA is that if we cannot play all competition games on the fields available we abandon the day - known as a 'Total Washout'.

Last season saw the two Kareela 'All Weather' fields come online, thereby providing the opportunity to play additional games when a Total Washout would have previously been declared.  After the success of this initiative the SSFA invited Clubs to include their fields in the 'Plan B' scenario, which was also a success in getting more games played.

This year, we look to expand the 'Plan B' availability of fields and maximise game play for all.

All competition divisions will be 'placed in a hat' and drawn at random to determine which age/ grade will be drawn to play at the Kareela Synthetic fields and other available fields (One list for Saturday, one for Sunday). Once 'drawn from the hat' an age/ grade will no longer be eligible to be 'put back in the hat' for subsequent washed out rounds.

Clubs will be advised of the order that ages/ grades are drawn. For example - First drawn is 21C, second drawn is W16B, third drawn 14B, and so on.

OPERATION

As Round 18 is the first round to be 'abandoned', the ages/grades drawn at random will play Round 18 on the day that a 'total washout' is declared. No other age/ grade will play Round 18 (unless they are also 'drawn from the hat' and another round is a 'total washout') and therefore the Saturday and Sunday publishing of Rounds each subsequent week will remain in synch (and therefore minimise confusion for future rounds).

The two Age/Grades that are at the top of the list will play on Kareela 2 and 3, subsequent age/grades will play on other fields if available.

For example, using the above example of the age/ grades that are randomly determined, if a 'total washout' is called the SSFA will implement the pre-advised draw:

- all 21C Round 18 games will be played on Kareela 2,

- all W16B Round 18 games will be played on Kareela 3,

- all 14B Round 18 games will be played on the first available other field.

- and so on.

- the match times will have been published in advance to Clubs so that for example the 21Cs who were originally kicking off at 2:50PM somewhere else will know that they are now playing at 08:30AM etc. 

COST and OBLIGATIONS

As these games will be 'all foreign games' costs associated with use of Synthetic pitches will be shared by all Clubs involved (Council have advised that the charge rate to the SSFA is $30 per hour per field). Also it will be expected that Clubs participating in the first game of the day will setup the field, and last game of the day will pack up the field. All Clubs/ teams using the synthetic fields will be required to comply with the 'Criteria for Use' that has previously been distributed (and is attached).

OTHER NOTES

Should the above occur prior to the 4th round regrading, the Round 18 results will be ignored when comparing to higher/lower grades that may be considered for regrading.

 

WET WEATHER AND IT'S IMPACT (via the SSFA Executive Committee)

The SSFA Executive Committee (EC) and Clubs share the frustration of players that are impacted by the weather and disappointment that is inevitable when games are washed out.

Sharing some of the challenges that are faced may lead to a better understanding of the process.

Volume of Impact

SSFA have over 17,500 players in the Association, participating in more than 700 matches each weekend, and are the largest football Association of any code within Australia. The logistics of running such a competition is extremely complicated. On a Saturday alone we have games involving nearly 11,000 players, across more than 1,000 teams, in the Shire.

Restraints

The Council allocates the grounds to Football (Soccer) for only 22 weeks a year and is unable and unwilling to provide any more. After this date for two weeks they remove posts / set up cricket pitches and then Cricket and other sports get the grounds for 22 weeks. Then they do not allocate two weeks before or after Christmas and use another 2 weeks to install posts and fill cricket pitches before we get the winter allocation back. 52 weeks in the year and this is the full 52 split for which we get 22.

Then we use 18 rounds for normal competition and 3 rounds finals and 1 spare week in the finals for a wash out. That’s our 22 and as such no spare week let alone weeks to pick up any washed out rounds. The rule book declares that the spare weekend must be kept only for a wash out of a finals game.

The only day we have to play more Football is the Monday of the June long weekend and, if ratified by the General Meeting of Club delegates, we do play that day when the weather permits – but not without acrimony from some participants.

Myth

“The Association calls the fields out”. This practice ceased many years ago. Each club is now required to contact the designated Association wet weather person by 6:30am on doubtful weekend days – the Club is responsible to make the ‘call’. If insufficient fields are deemed playable by the Clubs – that is there is not enough spare capacity to move games on that day after fields are called out – the days play will be ‘called off’.

A decision is made day-by day on the weekend and is wholly and solely based upon safety of players – not the need to protect fields, not with a preference to any age group or competition, or any other scurrilous reason.

The SSFA fully supports the club calls on each such a day.

Alternates often suggested

Play Saturday catch up on Sunday….At best the Sunday allocation allows for 30 games to be replayed from Saturday as the rest of the weekend allocation is full with almost another 7,000 players involved in Sunday competitions. If we had 150 games (less than one third of our Saturday games) to catch up one from (1) Saturday it would take five (5) weeks.

Play during the week under lights … we have ten (10) fields with game accredited lights and they can only play two (2) matches per night. So if we stopped those clubs training for a week and run night games on every weeknight it would take just under eight (8) weeks to catch up. Night games require not only significant investment in lighting but also council DA approval with consent of neighbours and that is why they are currently restricted to Lakewood, The Ridge, Gymea, Miranda and Solander where impact on neighbours is limited.  Not to mention the challenge of volunteers at night for canteen / ground control and ground marking etc.

Extend the season……see previous comment re limit of 22 weeks of allocation maximum from Council

Outcome

SSFA Rule 18.D Entire Rounds not Played states that

  1. If a complete round of Saturday and Sunday matches for Round 1 to Round 15 of the competitions is not played for any reason, including weather or ground conditions, the Rounds affected will be redrawn to be played as soon as possible to ensure all teams in competitions with eight (8) teams or less play every other team in the division, including the Bye Round, at least once during the season. This will also ensure teams in competitions with eight (8) teams or less do not play some teams up to three times and others only once or possibly not at all.
  2. If it is necessary to abandon completely any unplayed competition rounds prior to the finals, the E.C. will abandon Round 18 and, if necessary, additional rounds regressively from Round 17 to provide a finals series as covered by Rule 9. A. (c)

 

The EC and the club officials who make the call to the SSFA deeming the fields playable or otherwise are only in the game to see more football not less. We are constrained and do our best within that for the greater vision of building sporting communities. All this is done by volunteers who love the game. If we had an opportunity to play more football and the potential to catch up lost games – we would!

 

 

 

 

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