Welcome to our 2020-2021 Friday night junior touch competition. Please read these conditions carefully and keep this document as a handy reference for contacts, dates and competition information. There have been some significant changes this year due to COVID-19 and the introduction of a new software system by Touch Football Australia for player and team registration.
Our competition will commence at the beginning of Term 4 in the school year.
Team registration will open August 29 and close on September 26. Registration of teams into the competition after 26 September will be at the committee’s discretion e.g. to remove a bye from a competition.
There may be a need to restrict the number of teams in the competition this season to comply with NSW Health orders in response to the COVID-19 Pandemic. In the event that team numbers do have to be restricted, entry to the competition will be on a first come first serve basis, and provided a team has the minimum number of players properly registered into their team by the required date.
Players must register into their teams and pay their fees individually at the time of registration. See further information outlined below under Player Registration and Fees.
Competition commences: Round 1: Fri 16 Oct 2020
Round 9: Fri 11 Dec 2020
Break – Christmas
Round 10: Fri 29 Jan 2021
Bye: Fri 19 Feb 2021 – Junior State Cup (19 – 21 Feb 2021)
Round 15: Fri 12 Mar 2021
Finals Series: U11 – U17 (top 4)
Semi-Finals: Fri 19 Mar 2021 – 1v4, 2v3. Winners progress to GF, losers eliminated.
Grand Finals: Fri 26 Mar 2021 (winners of semi-finals)
Wet Weather Spare: Fri 2 Apr 2021
U5, U7 & U9
Grand Finals: Fri 19 Mar 2021 (all teams play)
In the event of extended wet weather during the finals series, Ballina Touch reserves the right to alter the finals series format to suit available competition dates.
Draw: The weekly draw will be on the Ballina Touch website.
TEAM REGISTRATION and PLAYER PAYMENTS
To register a team into the competition, visit the Ballina Touch Juniors
website: https://ballina.nswtouch.com.au and follow the links/instructions to complete registration on-line. Team registration can only be completed through this on-line process.
For assistance email [email protected]
Teams can register from 29 August – 26 September 2020. In order for teams to participate in the competition, team registration must be completed by Friday 26 September 2020.
After registering your team, individual players must register into the team and pay their registration fee. A link to the individual registration portal will be provided on the Ballina Touch website. The individual registration fee can only be paid with a Visa or Mastercard Credit or Debit Card, or you can use your NSW Govt. Active Kids Voucher. This process is built into our online registration.
A player can only complete their registration by paying the registration fee. The individual registration fee for 2020-21 is $100 per player.
A minimum of eight (8) players for the U11 divisions and older and seven (7) players for U9 divisions & younger, are required to register into a team.
Teams that have registered into the competition, but not had the minimum number of players registered into their team will not be permitted to play in the competition until they have the minimum number of players i.e. they will forfeit their games until the minimum number of players have registered.
Teams that do not have the minimum number of players registered by Friday 9 October 2020 will not be included in the draw for Round 1 of the competition. Any team that does not meet this deadline, may be replaced in the competition by another team in the event that teams have been wait listed to be accepted into the competition due to restrictions required to comply with COVID-19 NSW Health Orders.
Players must be registered and fully paid prior to the night of their first game. To be eligible to play in a match on any given Friday night in the competition, players must have registered no later than the preceding Wednesday night, other than for Round 1 in which case they must be registered one week in advance as outlined above. This will ensure their name appears on the team sign-on sheet. It is not acceptable to register and pay, for example, on the day a player intends to play their first match. This creates administrative problems for our volunteers who are already very busy running the competition. Players can register into a team at any time up until the completion of Round 9 of the competition.
When registration is completed successfully each team will receive a match ball to be used for all team matches for the season. The ball can be collected from the canteen/tournament control area. Teams are expected to bring their match ball each week as the club does not supply balls for matches. Team Contacts are requested to sanitise/sterilise their match ball before bringing it to the grounds each week. Additional balls can be purchased from the canteen.
Working With Children
A ‘Working with children’ check must be completed by the adult contact for each team and submitted to Administration – [email protected] . The NSW Government has recently changed the way these checks are administered. The check must now be completed on-line via the RMS website – please use the following link:
Note that the process may take 3 – 4 weeks to finalise after completing the application. Team contacts should commence the process ASAP to ensure completion of the check prior to commencement of the competition. Once completed, the check is valid for other volunteer activities you undertake in NSW that may require a working with children check.
U5s Born 2015 or after
U7s Born 2013 or after
U9s Born 2011 or after
U11s Born 2009 or after
U13s Born 2007 or after
U15s Born 2005 or after
U17s Born 2003 or after
Divisions of Opens & Girls will be offered for U11s and above.
Please note that despite the names of each age division changing e.g. what was previously known as U18s is now known as U17s, the age qualification rules have not. So for the U17 division, players must be no older than 18 in 2021. This is a function of matching our age divisions to the age requirements for representative teams that will play at the Junior State Cup in February each year and the requirements of the new software system from Touch Football Australia.
Teams may be re-graded at any time during the competition at the discretion of the committee, but no later than round 9 of the competition. This is to ensure all teams enjoy an evenly matched competition. Prior competition points are carried with the team.
Games are played under the TFA Touch Rules edition 8, except in the case of the specified modifications for the U5 – U9 age divisions. In these divisions, games are played on a half field, with a smaller ball. Each team has 5 players only on the field (must have 3 players to prevent a forfeit) and a coach is allowed on the field. Referees, Coaches and Officials are to ensure that ALL players in these age groups have an enjoyable game. Note: The attacking team is to be given reasonable opportunity to use the ball with defenders not moving up until the acting half has passed the ball. Multiple passing is encouraged.
No points ladder applies in the U5 – U9 divisions. All teams will play on Grand Final Night and all players will receive a trophy.
In the U11 – U17 divisions, points will be awarded as follows:
Win – 3 points
Draw – 2 points
Loss – 1 point
Bye – 3 points
Forfeits: Teams that give 24 or more hours notice will be awarded one competition point (as a loss), for that round. No prior notice of a forfeit will result in no competition points and a warning, with any subsequent lack of notice for a forfeit resulting in a two match suspension.
The U5 – U9 age groups will play a grand final match where every team will qualify and participate. All players in these age divisions will receive trophies.
The U11 and above age groups will play a finals series where the top four teams in the division will qualify. Trophies/prizes will be awarded to the grand final winners and runners-up. The format of the finals series may be altered if wet weather disrupts the scheduling of matches.
The finals series has changed for 2020-21 compared to previous seasons. A 2 week knock-out finals series will be utilised for the U11 and older age groups whereby, based on the finishing positions on the competition table at the end of the regular season, Team 1 will play Team 4, and Team 2 will play Team 3 in week 1. The winners of those matches will advance to the Grand Final with the losers eliminated.
Player Sign On
A new system of sign on and checking player uniforms was introduced in 2018-19. This will continue for 2020-21, subject to any changes required in response to COVID-19.
Each week, a team sign on sheet will be produced and available at the canteen/tournament control area. The nominated team contact is required to collect the sign-on sheet before the match commences and take it to the field of play where all players must sign the sign-on sheet BEFORE taking the field to play on the night – there will be no sign on at the canteen. The team contacts will also be required to sign and confirm that the opposition team players have all signed on and are all in correct uniform. The sign on sheet must then be returned to the canteen at the end of the match.
Players must sign on before taking the field of play to be covered by insurance. In the U11 and older age groups, players must have signed on and participated in a minimum of 5 games throughout the season to be eligible to play in the finals series.
Failing to sign-on may result in a loss of competition points. Further penalties will apply for repeat offenders. Please assist us in this vital process as it is there to ensure players are insured and the competition maintains its integrity with players being registered.
NO fill-in players are allowed. Only players registered in the team can play for that team. PENALTY for using players who are not registered in your team is loss of competition points.
All injuries must be notified immediately to the referees for noting on the game card. Team contacts/parents must ensure all injuries are recorded in the Injury Book located at the clubhouse (normally with the first aid kit in the canteen).
Footwear must be worn at all times while playing – touch or grass shoes are strongly
recommended. Players found with spikes, screw in studs, or slip on shoes will not be permitted to play and asked to leave the field.
As a result of COVID-19 NSW Health orders, and to ensure Ballina Touch complies with those requirements, the format of the competition has to change for the coming season. In particular our competition, at the time of writing this document, is restricted to only 500 people at the venue at any given time. This includes, Ballina Touch officials, referees, players, coaches, parents and other spectators. The following timeslots will apply as of the date of these conditions of entry being prepared but are subject to change:
Games will be 30 minutes Touchdown turnaround with no half time break. There will be a 15 minute break between matches to allow players, parents and supporters of teams that have completed their matches to leave the venue, and players, parents and supporters for the next timeslot to arrive.
U5s to 13s :4:30 pm, 5:15 pm or 6:00 pm;
U13s to U17s 6:45 pm, 7:30 pm.
Any specific requests regarding game times may be given in writing to the competition
administrator, or via email to [email protected] The club will endeavour to accommodate all requests, but cannot guarantee they can be met.
All players in a team must wear the same coloured playing top – shirt or singlet. Predominantly white uniforms will not be accepted as they clash with the referees. All players must have an approved visible number on their shirt. No tape or drawn numbers will be allowed. Numbers must be not less than 16cm in height on the back, or not less that 8cm in height on BOTH sleeves. From Round 3, each player out of uniform will result in a ‘bonus touchdown’ awarded to the opposition (by the competition administrator), which in turn may affect competition points for that game.
Wet Weather Policy:
Games will not be played if the grounds/conditions are deemed too wet or dangerous. Every effort will be made to have games go ahead. If in doubt, go to our website or Facebook page from 3pm on Fridays where cancellations due to wet weather will be published. Cancellations will result in the draw continuing as normal with no re-scheduling of games. For the purposes of the competition ladder (U11 – U17), all matches in a cancelled round will be regarded as a draw. Teams that had a bye on washed out rounds will be allocated 3 points for the bye.
Extreme Weather Guidelines:
Games may be cancelled or postponed if extreme weather is experienced or forecast. Extreme weather includes extreme heat, cold, wind, lightning and storms. Ballina Touch utilises the NSW Touch Extreme Weather Policy which can be found on the NSW Touch website. In the event of extreme weather causing the cancellation of games during a round, results from any completed games from that round will stand and any uncompleted games will count as a draw.
Ground Capacity and Venue Management Due to COVID-19
As a result of NSW Health Orders in response to COVID-19, Ballina Touch has had to implement restrictions on the number of people attending Saunders Oval at a time. A full COVID-19 management plan is being developed and will be implemented when complete.
At the time of writing these conditions of entry, the venue is restricted to a maximum of 500 people attending at any one time. Due to our high participation rate, especially in the younger age groups, this has required Ballina Touch to adopt the following restrictions on attendance at the venue:
- The club requests that a maximum of one parent or carer attend the venue with each player. Parents are encouraged to bring multiple players from the same family group and/or teams to the venue to reduce numbers.
- Players, coaches and parents/carers are requested to arrive as close as possible to the commencement time for their match.
- At the conclusion of their match, all players, coaches and parents/carers are requested to immediately leave the venue.
- A 15 minute break between games has been allowed for this changeover. Should a 15 minute break prove inadequate, the committee may extend this break between games.
- Non-playing children may only attend the venue with a parent or carer who is supervising another child playing or refereeing.
- Unaccompanied children will only be permitted at the venue if they are playing or refereeing.
- There has been a practice in recent seasons of significant numbers of children whether participants in the competition or not, travelling directly to the venue from school and waiting until their match is to be played. There is no capacity to accommodate this practice under current NSW Health orders and maintain the number of attendees to 500 at a time. We request parents/carers and players to make alternative arrangements. The alternative would be to restrict the number of teams in the competition and we want to ensure as many players as possible get the opportunity to participate.
- Only referees and club officials will be permitted upstairs in the clubhouse.
- A restricted canteen will be in operation.
- Modified sign-on procedures are likely to be adopted and are in development.
- All non-playing attendees at the venue may be required to register their attendance at the venue on each occasion they visit.
- Players, spectators, parents and carers are required to adhere to social distancing requirements at all times. This includes players and coaches in the sub-box on the sideline whilst matches are in progress.
The club does not tolerate any abuse by players, parents, spectators, referees or officials towards any other user group mentioned, and any breaches will be dealt with by the Committee. A written warning system will be utilised with suspensions applying to individuals AND teams for misbehaviour deemed not in the best interests of the game.
Ballina Touch advises all parents, carers, spectators, coaches and other supporters of all teams that you are equally covered by the code of conduct for Ballina Touch. In the event of any person associated with a particular team being found to have breached the code of conduct, penalties will be applied to the team you are associated with. This can include loss of competition points, suspension from the competition for a period of time for individuals and/or entire teams and expulsion from the competition for individuals and/or entire teams. No refunds will be given.
Your assistance in reporting any incidents is greatly appreciated. Please refer to the relevant Codes of Conduct on the NSW Touch website and on page 7. BTA advises that suspended players are notified to NSW Touch and adjoining affiliates and are unable to participate in any affiliated Touch Football competition whilst suspended.
Any person that wishes to raise issues about the conduct of another player, coach, parent spectator or supporter is advised to contact either the Director Junior Touch, or the Competition Administrator.
Bikes, Skateboards & Scooters:
The riding or leaving of pushbikes, skateboards or scooters near playing fields and crowded areas is not permitted for safety reasons.
Get paid to referee!
A Level 1 Referees Course will be held on Sunday 25 October 2020. Keep an eye on the website and Facebook page for details. Participants must be 12 years or over to enrol.
There will be a cost to participate in the course and this will be advised once details are confirmed. The club will subsidise the cost of a referee’s shirt for each person that completes the course successfully.
There is an on-line component of the course that must be completed prior to attending the course. Intending participants must bring to the face to face course the certificate confirming their completion of this component. Without it, you will not be able to complete the face to face course. It can be completed in your own time and it is recommended that intending participants make a start ASAP.
Go to the following link and follow the instructions: https://learning.ausport.gov.au
Players, coaches, parents, spectators and supporters are reminded that most of our referees are juniors and many will be refereeing for the first time this season. They will be learning as the season progresses. The only person that is to approach a referee whilst matches are in progress is the team captain. Team coaches or the captain may also politely ask a question at half time of a match. Asking questions of the referee is not an opportunity for a debate, or to dispute decisions. It is an opportunity to seek clarification on a particular matter.
At all times anyone approaching a referee is to abide by the code of conduct. The committee will deal harshly with anyone found to have breached the code of conduct in their behaviour towards referees. Penalties will also apply to the team that the person is associated with.
Remember, this competition is about participation, fun and exercise. The players are kids, the referees are kids, our competition is run by volunteers – set a good example.
Returning referees are asked to advise the club of their availability to referee during the upcoming season.
With the rise in the use of social media, Ballina Touch has adopted the NSW Touch Policy on the use of Social media by participants in our competition. All participants in our competition, including players, parents and coaches are bound by the code as a condition of entry to the competition. A copy of the code can be found on the NSW Touch website.
AMENDMENTS TO CONDITIONS
Ballina Touch reserves the right to amend or alter these conditions as circumstances dictate from time to time to address issues as they arise, clarify an existing condition or add new conditions if deemed necessary.
In particular it is likely, if not guaranteed, that these conditions of entry will need to be modified during the season in response to NSW Health orders/directions regarding the COVID-19 pandemic. Any changes will be advised to team contacts as required.
All decisions of Ballina Touch will be final in this regard.
WE HOPE YOU ENJOY THE UPCOMING SEASON!
PLAYER’S CODE OF CONDUCT
- Abide by the NSW Touch Code of Conduct.
- Play by the rules
- Never argue with an official. If you would like a point clarified ask your captain or coach to approach the referee at half time or after the game in an appropriate manner.
- Control your temper. Verbal abuse of officials or other players, deliberately sledging, distracting or provoking an opponent is not acceptable in any sport.
- Work equally hard for yourself and your team. Your team’s participation will benefit, so will you.
- Be a good sport. Acknowledge all good plays, whether they are made by your team or the opposition.
- Treat all players as you would like to be treated. Do not interfere with, bully or take unfair advantage of another player.
- Cooperate with your coach, team-mates and opponents. Without them there would be no competition.
- Avoid the use of derogatory language, particularly language based on gender, race or impairment.
- Be prepared to lose sometimes. Everyone wins and loses at some time. Be a gracious winner or loser.
- Participate for your own enjoyment and benefit, not just to please your parents and coach.
- Respect the rights, dignity of all participants regardless of their gender, ability, cultural background or religion.
PARENT’S CODE OF CONDUCT
- Abide by the NSW Touch Code of Conduct.
- Encourage your child to learn and develop skills through full participation in playing and practice. Let the coach know as soon as possible if your child will not be able to attend a playing session.
- Encourage your child to always play by the rules.
- Do not criticise children in front of others, but reserve constructive feedback for more private moments.
- Remember children are involved in sport for their enjoyment, not yours.
- Remember children learn best by example. Applaud good play by all teams.
- Accept decisions of all referees as being called to the best of their ability. Do not raise issues of disagreement publicly, and at all times remember that it is up to the team coach or captain to politely raise issues of disagreement with the referee in an appropriate manner at an appropriate time – not you.
- Do not criticise opposing team members or supporters by word or gesture.
- Set a good example by your own conduct, behaviour and appearance.
- Support all efforts to remove verbal and physical abuse. Avoid the use of foul language, particularly based on gender, race or impairment. Do not smoke or drink alcohol as a spectator on the sidelines.