The Eacham Junior Rugby League, encompassing the Atherton Tablelands communities of Ravenshoe, Herberton, Malanda and Atherton, are looking to the future with the League electing to transition to alignment with the Player Development Framework in 2020 at their January meeting.
The adoption of the Player Development Framework concepts supports:
- all entry level participation (Under 6) playing TAG rugby league
- the delivery of the TackleReady program for all Under 7 participants, players and coaches
- Under 12 competition aligning to the principles of a development competition with no premierships in this age group
- 18-month registration window providing an opportunity for players born between July and December to register in the year level immediately below their calendar grouping. This initiative specifically targets children who are new to the game, late developers or gaining confidence
NRL games development officer Alby Anderson applauded the Eacham Junior Rugby League and also the Tully Juniors club for getting on the front foot with the introduction of the framework and the development opportunities it offers for players.
“The Development team is looking forward to working with the clubs through this exciting stage,” Anderson said.
The Eacham regional competition comprises of teams in the Under 6 to Under 16 divisions and has experienced fluctuating player numbers (453 in 2019) over recent years.
The decision to introduce the Player Development Framework concepts in 2020 has been made following consultation with the NRL Development team and stakeholders.
Atherton JRL president Barry Dikes was looking forward to the introduction of the framework.
“Like many regional areas, our player numbers are affected by community and economic factors,” Dikes said.
“The opportunity for players to be introduced to and participate in rugby league in line with the Player Development Framework was attractive with the goal of attracting and retaining players in our clubs.”
Those keen to join an Eacham team in 2020 can contact their local club via the numbers listed:
Atherton Junior Rugby League: Michelle - 0428 116 136
Herberton Junior Rugby League: Maree - 0419 434 201
Malanda Junior Rugby League: Frances - 0427 815 468
Ravenshoe Junior Rugby League: Bec - 0400 966 019