POSTPONED: The much-anticipated first round local derby clash in the Group 2 competition between the Grafton Ghosts and South Grafton Rebels has been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
POSTPONED: The much-anticipated first round local derby clash in the Group 2 competition between the Grafton Ghosts and South Grafton Rebels has been delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

State of play for Clarence sports under coronavirus

CORONAVIRUS: With many sports and sporting events either postponing or cancelling their seasons in response to the coronavirus pandemic, here is an up-to-date look at what your sport has done to try and combat the spread of COVID-19.

The coronavirus situation is rapidly evolving, and this information was correct at time of publication on Tuesday, March 24.

AUSSIE RULES: AFL North Coast have delayed the start of the season until at least May 31, following a statement from AFL NSW.

"Consistent with the decision yesterday in relation to State League football and the national and state talent programs, all AFL and AFL State association managed or operated leagues along with the NAB AFL Auskick Centres programs currently operating or set to begin, will be postponed until May 31, 2020," the statement said.

"Football has had many challenges and despite the size of this one, football will find a way through."

A Grafton Tigers player goes for a bump on a Bellingen Bulldog in the youth girls grand final.
A Grafton Tigers player goes for a bump on a Bellingen Bulldog in the youth girls grand final.

BASKETBALL: Basketball NSW comps are suspended until April 26. GBAI came to the decision to align with Basketball Australia's recommendation to suspend all basketball related activities as a proactive approach in protecting the health and wellbeing of the players, association members and local community.

CRICKET: Cricket Australia and Cricket NSW made an announcement on Tuesday, March 17, where the governing bodies made the strong recommendation to immediately stop playing cricket at all levels for the remainder of the season based on medical advice.

As a result the Clarence River Cricket Association, Lower Clarence Cricket Association and North Coast Cricket Council all suspended their seasons across all grades.

Chris Cleaver scored 23 for South Services in the 2019/20 Clarence River Cricket Association GDSC Premier League major semi-final win over minor premiers GI Hotel Tucabia-Copmanhurst at Ulmarra Showground on Saturday, March 14, 2020.
Chris Cleaver scored 23 for South Services in the 2019/20 Clarence River Cricket Association GDSC Premier League major semi-final win over minor premiers GI Hotel Tucabia-Copmanhurst at Ulmarra Showground on Saturday, March 14, 2020.

Last week the CRCA declared South Services the winners of the GDSC Premier League competition, while Maclean United have claimed the title of LCCA Maclean Bowling Club first grade premiers.

CYCLING: Organisers for the 60th Grafton to Inverell announced they have postponed this year's event due to a directive from the NSW Police Force, as a result of the COVID-19 response. A future date for the event will be announced later this year.

A Grade competitors ride along Ryan St at the start of the 2019 Grafton to Inverell Cycling Classic on Saturday, 11th May, 2019.
A Grade competitors ride along Ryan St at the start of the 2019 Grafton to Inverell Cycling Classic on Saturday, 11th May, 2019.

FOOTBALL: Northern NSW Football, North Coast Football and Football Far North Coast confirmed last week all football activity has been suspended until Tuesday, April 14 2020 as per the requirement of Football Federation Australia.

GOLF: Golf NSW continues to closely monitor advice provided by the Department of Health, Federal and State Government bodies in relation to game participation and golf club operations.

The governing body has released a number of measures they recommend clubs enforce, which can be found at https://www.golfnsw.org.au/.

HOCKEY: With Hockey NSW strongly recommending all hockey activities be suspended until May 2 2020, Grafton Hockey Association said they are following the recommendation and guidance provided by Hockey NSW in regards to a delayed start to the current season.

"The situation will be reviewed continually and advise provided as we move through the next few weeks, this delay also applies to training, rep trials and meetings at the hockey centre as well," a statement from the GHA board said.

<< Follow this link to stay up to date with the latest coronavirus information specific to the Clarence Valley >>

LAWN BOWLS: Bowls NSW head of sport and operations, David Ellis, confirmed all bowling was to be cancelled, effective immediately.

"It is Bowls NSW direction that all bowling activities be suspended for the immediate future," he said.

Ellis said Bowls NSW does not endorse any club decision to carry on with any bowling activity on their premises.

MOTORSPORT: Grafton Speedway has suspended future events until further notice in the wake of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic.

"We are left with no alternative after the Government's motive to curtail all public events attracting 500 people or more," a statement on the Grafton Speedway Facebook page said.

"The only other option the Government issued was sporting events conducted without spectators which for the speedway industry is not possible.

"As soon as it is humanly possible we will be back racing at Hessions Auto Grafton Speedway. We will keep you to date with any new information."

NETBALL: In response to the current COVID-19 virus outbreak and the advice from Netball NSW, Grafton Netball Association and Lower Clarence Netball Assocation have decided to postpone the start of the 2020 season until Saturday, May 2.

Both associations remind players and fans the season is not cancelled, and a full season is intended to be played when possible.

RACING: Both the Clarence River Jockey Club and Grafton Greyhounds will continue to race, but behind closed doors.

Racing NSW and Greyhounds NSW have both advised clubs across the state that racing can continue, but without any public access.

Andrew Mallyon brings Kievann home to win the Yamba Golf and Country Club Yamba Cup for trainer Lauren Abbott
Andrew Mallyon brings Kievann home to win the Yamba Golf and Country Club Yamba Cup for trainer Lauren Abbott

RUGBY LEAGUE: The kick-off to the Group 2 and NRRRL seasons have been pushed back to May 1 after NSWRL announced last week all 2020 Community Rugby League competitions and activities have been postponed effective immediately, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

NSWRL chief executive David Trodden said the recommendation covers all rugby league matches, trials, training, courses and other club activities and was made with the health and wellbeing of players, coaches, staff, officials and volunteers and the broader community as a paramount consideration.

RUGBY UNION: All community rugby union matches, rugby training and coaching clinics have been postponed until May.

The NSW Country Championships may be played over the June long weekend if possible.

MAN MOUNTAIN: Redmen second-rower Rhys Nelson impressed the coaching staff in Grafton's trial game against Casino Bulls on Saturday.
MAN MOUNTAIN: Redmen second-rower Rhys Nelson impressed the coaching staff in Grafton's trial game against Casino Bulls on Saturday.

SURFING: Surfing NSW and other surf event organisers have decided to reschedule or cancel the following events that were planned to run in March and April:

• Barney Miller Classic - March 27-29 at Sawtell: Event Postponed until further notice and Surfing NSW will be refunding entries

• Ocean & Earth Northern Beaches Junior Regionals - April 4-5: Postponed until further notice

• Billabong Oz Grom Comp - April 13-17 at Coffs Harbour: - Event cancelled and Surfing NSW will be refunding entries

• WSL JQS Hydralyte Sports NSW Pro Junior - April 18-19 at Narrabeen: Postponed until further notice.

Dakoda Walters in the Vissla Central Coast Pro
Dakoda Walters in the Vissla Central Coast Pro

SPORTS CENTRES/GYMS: A NSW-wide shutdown which has come into effect over 48 hours since this Monday saw all non-essential services and locations closed, including gyms and indoor sports centres.



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