Keep Under 16s teams in our AFL Junior football clubs
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AFL Gippsland want to remove Under 16 teams from our Traralgon and district junior football clubs. Instead players aged 14 years old and onwards will leave their junior football clubs and will need to try out at senior clubs for Under 17s. Consequently 14 year old children will be required to try out and/or play against players aged between 14 and 17 years old. This WILL result in children leaving our sport at a very early age of 14 years old as they will either not get through try outs (competing against kids turning 18yrs), or they won't even try out due to the daunting prospect of playing against players 3 years older than them (and likely twice their size). The other issue is if the children can access travel to and from training sessions and games. Have a look at the photo, half will have to leave their junior clubs and try out against 17 year olds. Do they look developmentally ready? Ready for senior footy? No they are not and sadly many will not go any further with footy. These changes have significant health, wellbeing and safety ramifications for our children. We shudder to think what these children will be doing instead of playing the game they love (drugs, crime etc).
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