South Gawler Football Club is preparing to step into the realm of women’s football in a big way, looking at producing a team by the 2018 season.
Lions’ president Luke Officer says the club has been ‘proactive’ in its women’s football interest.
“We’ve been pretty proactive in wanting to get a women’s footy side up as quickly as possible,” he said.
“The league itself has been proactive.
“There’s been a few come and try days.”
The Barossa, Light and Gawler Football Association is looking at having a competition by the year’s end, but if it is not to be, then South will take its own path.
“I think the endeavours of the league are to try and get at least a BLG squad, but as part of our forward thinking we want to have our women’s team,” Officer said.
“Whether every BLG club has a women’s team next year or it’s only South in the Adelaide league, we certainly want to have that ready to go for 2018.”
The club is putting out expressions of interest, but stresses it is not attempting to step on the toes of netball.
“We’re putting out there expressions of interest for some seniors and as well as juniors, as we want to facilitate for everyone,” Officer said.
“We’re also conscious that we don’t want to step on netball, because that’s a big part of the club.
“If we take away the netball club, you’re sort of robbing Peter to pay Paul.”
Officer said that scheduling changes could help, or the entry into the city competition, the Adelaide Women’s Footy League)
“Whether it’s something we work out in terms of when games are scheduled, we certainly want to have a side fielded for 2018, because we think that’s the next generation of football,” he said.
“If the BLG can’t field nine sides, then that’s (Adelaide Women’s Footy League) the only league I’m aware of that’s running.
“I don’t want to get ahead of ourselves, but if it’s going to be South on its own then that’ll certainly be our first port of call.”
Another consideration from the BLGFA has been that of a combined side, which Officer said could be problematic in the long term.
“I think if we’re going to have combined team that’s going to be considered, the problem I can see there is, when you get to a stage of breaking down that combined team into nine BLG teams, what you’re going to be doing is forcing players to make decisions, where they go, to choose a side,” he said.
“I think that if we’re going to do a combined side that it’s a good idea for juniors, but for seniors it’s a different story.
“That’s why we think it would be better to have our own side.”
He also said that South would look at holding its own come and try day in the future.
“We’re certainly looking to do our come and try day, and that’s not to step on the feet of others, we want to know in our own demographic who’s interested in it,” he said.
“We might have none, we might have 30.”