Group Four Rugby League has made two major announcements recently, both of which have impacted the Narrabri Rugby League Football Club.
The second of those was made yesterday, which had significant implications for Narrabri’s first grade side.
First grade club Bendemeer yesterday informed Group Four that it would no longer field a side in the top grade in 2018.
However, it stated its intention to continue playing in reserve grade and ladies’ league tag.
Bendemeer club president Paul Craig notified Group Four president Ray McCoy on Wednesday of the problem his club faced after it forfeited its second grade game to Narrabri at Collins Park last Sunday, and then copped an 80-14 loss in first grade.
Just one week earlier the club’s first grade side was smashed 92-20 by North Tamworth.
Craig said that Bendemeer was forced to withdraw its first grade side due to a lack of first grade quality players.
McCoy and the Group Four board of directors met on Wednesday and okayed the decision.
But they did so with several conditions.
One of those was that the points for and against from Bendemeer’s round one and two games were rendered null and void, with both games deemed to be a bye.
That meant that North Tamworth and Narrabri both kept their respective two points, but now have negative points differences, with only their losses against Kootingal and Gunnedah respectively having an impact on their points difference totals.
Narrabri Rugby League Football Club president Michael Gleeson said that Group Four’s decision to change those two results to byes was the fairest one.
All clubs scheduled to play Bendemeer from round three onwards in first grade in 2018 will receive two points for a bye, which this weekend was to be the Boggabri Kangaroos.
Meanwhile a second significant decision benefitted the Blues’ reserve grade side, with their round one loss against Gunnedah overturned last week.