Locals sign up for one of Australia’s fastest growing sports

This group turned out last Wednesday night to play AFL 9’s, one of Australia’s fastest growing sports. – Photo contributed

AFL 9’s, one of Australia’s fastest growing sports with tens of thousands registered participants, is set to commence soon in Cobar.

The new competition has been organised by the Cobar Blues Football & Netball Club who, for the past two years, has been unable to field an AFL side for the Northern Riverina League competition.

Club co-president Bianka Jacobson said the 9’s competition aims to give Auskick kids and former AFL blues players the opportunity to still pursue AFL and build on their skills.

“The idea came about last year when Che Jenkins, a development officer with AFL NSW/ACT, contacted the club and suggested it as an idea to keep AFL going after the boys were no longer a part of the Northern Riverina Football League competition,” Jacobson said.

“AFL 9’s is a modified version of AFL, and is played with nine players per side and a softer ball.

“The rules are modified to accommodate players from all levels, and the game is open to almost anyone, males and females, 13 years and older,” Jacobson said.

It is a non-contact sport and tags, like League Tag, are used to “tackle” a player.

“Behinds are worth one point, a goal scored by a male is worth six points and a female goal is worth nine points.”

The club held a ‘come and try’ game last Wednesday with 20 participants of all ages.

“Depending on the number of teams we get, we are looking to run a six to eight week competition,” Jacobson said.

“It does not matter if you have never touched an AFL ball before, you will pick the rules up pretty easily and it’s all about having fun, trying something new and running around with your friends,” she said.

“We welcome anyone 13+ to come along and give it ago.”

See advertisement on Page 22 for details of the new competition.