East beckons Bombers

BOISDALE Briagolong is set to meet with the East Gippsland Football-Netball League in the coming weeks regarding a potential move from North Gippsland next season.

Bombers secretary Cathy Sandeman said the club was “happy” in the North Gippsland Football-Netball League, but was open to hearing the seven-team EGFNL’s proposal.

Sandeman said the committee would need to weigh quality of football against monetary concerns.

“There’s a lot of pros and cons and a lot of things we need to talk about… before we jump one way or another,” she said.

“Financially it would be better to go east than stay where we are, but the level of football is not as good.

“At the moment we’re quite competitive (in North Gippsland), despite the fact that we’re still on the bottom of the ladder.

“We’re very, very content, we can’t complain, the North Gippsland league has been fantastic.”

East Gippsland requires teams to provide their own umpires, which would necessitate a call to arms for volunteers at the club.

“We only sort of know the top layer at the moment and until (7 August) when we hear from them, there might be other things we need to consider,” Sandeman said.

“The committee is split 50-50 on what we’re thinking so it will be a very interesting conversation… it will be a very tight fought run.”

A for vote of at least 50 per cent from the Boisdale Briagolong committee of about 20 members is required for the proposal to be put to the club at large, which would allow all members to weigh in following a second presentation by the EGFNL.

The NGFNL would also have the opportunity to make a presentation to the Bombers’ membership at the same meeting prior to any final vote.

NGFNL president Gordon Bayley said he was confident of retaining Boisdale Briagolong, but respected its right to listen to proposals from other leagues.

“We’d be extremely confident (of retaining them), they’re a valued member of our family,” Bayley said.

“They’re just talking to them, I guess probably to satisfy a couple of people on their committee that just wanted to understand what they had to offer.

“There’s no real groundswell as we understand it, unlike the Yarram situation… Boisdale don’t want to leave, they just believe they owe it to their committee to have a listen and why not? We haven’t got a problem with that.”

If an overwhelming majority of the Bombers’ committee and members voted to move east, the EGFNL teams would still need to vote in favour of accepting the club.

North Gippsland and AFL Victoria Country have final veto rights, but would not likely execute them should the club decide to switch leagues.

“If Boisdale turned around and said we definitely want to go to East Gippsland it would be unlikely we would stop them,” Bayley said.

“East Gippsland is a seven-team competition so they’re obviously looking to put another team in there to give them a little more depth, but we haven’t got a problem with that.”

The Bombers were previously approached by the EGFNL two years ago, but decided against the move.