Qld Touch considers Cup contingency as popularity soars
QUEENSLAND Touch will soon have to consider alternative arrangements for the Junior State Cup.
The 22nd Junior State Cup, set to be held from July 6-8 this year, attracts more than 3000 junior touch footballers and their families from across Queensland.
Queensland Touch shifted the annual event to run from Thursday-to-Saturday last year, but the upcoming instalment, which will be the seventh time its held in Hervey Bay, will be the first at which Queensland Touch truly utilise the new event times.
CEO Jamie O'Connor said an expected increase in the number of teams at the competition could mean games are played under lights for the first time.
He said the shift in start times allowed the governing body to adjust draws and field configurations.
"We've got the capacity to do that now with the change to dates," O'Connor said. "It will allow us to go into the night if we need it."
O'Connor said the most likely increase in participation will come from the newer affiliates who choose to enter more teams.
This year's Junior State Cup is the first since Queensland Touch agreed to keep the event in Hervey Bay until 2022.
O'Connor warned there were still several aspects on which he and Fraser Coast Regional Council had to work through. They include the condition of fields, and how accommodation providers deal with visitors.
"We need to make sure we aren't restricted," he said.
O'Connor watched from afar as the football season was delayed through a combination of historically low rainfall and the condition of local fields.
While the rain has since given the Tavistock and Bideford Sts fields new life, O'Connor admitted it was the first time Queensland Touch has considered the need for a contingency plan.
He said the event would remain in Hervey Bay, but he and council would have to negotiate ways to make the current, or other, locations suitable for competition.
Only eight weeks remain until the Junior State Cup.