The Warrnambool and District league is not giving up on its 2021 finals series and has revealed its scenarios if games can go ahead.
Play is currently off limits because of the latest state government coronavirus pandemic lockdown.
The WDFNL board met on Monday night to consider a number of possibilities.
"Due predominantly to the current restrictions as well as uncertainty surrounding when they will be eased, and what format any easing may take, the board has decided on an abbreviated two-week finals series," a league statement to clubs said.
"In reaching this decision the board also considered, if restrictions do ease sufficiently to allow community sport, there is always the distinct possibility they may be re-imposed at short notice.
"Therefore it was felt a two-week time frame may provide the WDFNL with the optimal opportunity to complete a finals series.
"As outlined below, and dependent on restrictions, there is also the option of reducing this to one week."
This is how the two-week finals series for all football and netball, including juniors will be structured:
Week one will consist of:
Saturday - First versus Fourth
Sunday - Second versus Third
Winners of these games progress to a grand final the following week (week two).
"If restrictions allow, which at this stage appears unlikely, week one will be this weekend, September 4 and 5," the statement continued.
"If restrictions do not allow competition on September 4 and 5 these matches will be deferred until September 11 and 12."
Due to an anticipated lack of training opportunities the football quarter lengths for week one will be reduced to:
Seniors - 16 minutes plus time-on
Reserves and under 18 - 14 minutes plus time-on
Under 15 - 10 minutes plus time-on
Week two will consist of:
Saturday - winners of week one play off in a grand final
Week two will be conducted on either September 11 if play resumes on September 4 and 5.
Or September 18 if play resumes on September 11 and 12.
"If there is no play on the weekend of September 11 and 12, the finals will revert to a one-week scenario of first versus second on September 18," the statement said.
"If there is still no play on September 18, no medals or cup will be awarded with the top teams in all grades awarded minor premiership flags for 2021."
Finals venues have not been yet been confirmed but the league will notify clubs as soon as they are locked-in.
"The board is obviously aware the above may not be the ideal scenario for all clubs but believes it provides the WDFNL with our best opportunity to conduct a finals series, as well as giving clubs some clarification and a degree of certainty regarding the remainder of the season," the statement said.
"I think it's fair to say large parts of the 2021 season have been compromised, and, unfortunately, the issues have now, unavoidably, impacted the finals series - an understatement - but certainly not what anyone would have wished for at the commencement of the season.
"It is also important to note if play were to proceed in the next few weeks there may still be restrictions on the availability of players travelling from Melbourne to participate."
The board has also provided clarity on its best and fairest presentation night.
"Unfortunately due to the current restrictions and the inherent uncertainty, the board believes there is little option but to cancel all presentation nights," the statement said.
"Rather, vote counts for all grades of football and netball will be conducted in an online scenario enabling supporters to watch. This will take place during grand final week.
"Obviously if there is no grand final the board will select a date and notify all clubs.
"The monies paid by clubs towards these events will be retained by the WDFNL and clubs will not be expected to contribute towards the 2022 presentation nights."
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