Following on from the announcement of the new single governance model for AFL in the region, the 2018 competition structure for the Black Diamond competitions have been released.

BDAFLThe competition will include two senior men's competitions, a women's competitions and a new social competition, whilst a point system will also be introduced into the Black Diamond Cup competition for the first time.

In all 41 teams will compete across the men's and women's competitions, with nominations still to be called for the social competition (over 30-35 years).

As previously advised the Black Diamond Cup competition will consist of 11 teams, an increase of 5 from 2017 and as such a Community Club Sustainability Program (CCSP i.e. points system) will be introduced to assist in the competitive balance of the competition.

The details of the CCSP are almost finalised however is expected to include a “Team Points Cap” which clubs will need to adhere to for each Black Diamond Cup match. In addition to this there will be a “ Home Player” component whereby clubs will be required to play a minimum number of “Home Players” in each Black Diamond Cup match.

BDAFL Board Member, Kevin Greaves has been working with AFL NSW/ACT on developing the CCSP and is happy with how it is shaping up.

"An effective CCSP is important for the competitive balance of the Black Diamond Cup competition, especially with the new clubs joining the competition" Greaves said.

"Whilst finding the right model is not easy, we are happy with how it is progressing and certainly believe it will have an effect, especially in the spread of new players across all the clubs" he added.

The women's competition continues to grow with new teams entered from existing clubs Terrigal Avoca and The Entrance Bateau Bay whilst teams from new clubs Wallsend-West Newcastle and Port Stephens have been accepted for the first time.

Newcastle City have been granted permission to field two women's teams under their own banner, with an internal draft to be held to spread the talent amongst both teams following the Blues domination of the 2017 Women's competition.

Overall 16 women's teams will compete in the one competition in 2018.

The competition will commence on Saturday, 7 April 2018 with all Grand Finals to be held on 1 September 2018. The Home and Away season will run for 18 weeks which all teams playing 16 matches and having two byes with the finals consisting of a top 7 being run over three weeks.

Full competition structure:

Black Diamond Cup – 11 Teams

Black Diamond Plate – 14 Teams

Black Diamond Women’s – 16 Teams

Cardiff

Cardiff

Cardiff

Gosford

Gosford

Gosford

Lake Macquarie

Lake Macquarie

Lake Macquarie

Killarney Vale

Killarney Vale

Killarney Vale

Maitland

Maitland

Maitland

Nelson Bay

Muswellbrook

Muswellbrook

Newcastle City

Nelson Bay

Nelson Bay

Singleton

Newcastle City

Newcastle City - Navy

Terrigal Avoca

Singleton

Newcastle City - White

Warners Bay

Terrigal Avoca

Port Stephens

Wyong Lakes

The Entrance Bateau Bay

Singleton

 

Wallsend – West Newcastle **

Terrigal Avoca

 

Warners Bay

The Entrance Bateau Bay

 

Wyong Lakes

Wallsend – West Newcastle **

   

Warners Bay

   

Wyong Lakes

Details

Black Diamond Cup

-       Includes all senior teams except Muswellbrook and The Entrance Bateau Bay

Black Diamond Plate

-       Muswellbrook and The Entrance Bateau Bay senior teams have been granted approval to participate in this competition due to them only having the one team.

-       AFL NSW/ACT are currently attempting to establish a senior men’s team from Wallsend-West Newcastle and if successful will field a team in this competition

Black Diamond Women’s

-       All sixteen teams to play in the one competition

-       New teams from Port Stephens, Terrigal Avoca, The Entrance Bateau Bay and Wallsend-West Newcastle

-       Newcastle to field two teams. The talent will be split across both women’s teams via a player draft.

-       Newcastle City will assist in the establishment of Wallsend-West Newcastle women’s team

Contacts:

Wal Bembic                  BDAFL President            0428 881 811
Kevin Greaves              BDAFL Board Member    0418 509 969
Garry Burkinshaw         BDAFL Footy Ops Mgr    0400 725 384

BDAFL

After protracted negotiations, the Black Diamond AFL, AFL NSW/ACT and AFL Hunter Coast have finally "approved in principle" a new governance model that will align both seniors and juniors.

Currently the Black Diamond AFL ran senior football in the region, with AFL Hunter Coast running junior football, however under the new model a single seven man Board made up of AFL NSW/ACT representatives and members elected by both the senior and junior clubs will govern football in the region.

The new model will see much needed increase in resourcing with a new Community Football Manager role overseeing implementation of competition strategy, junior/ senior alignment, club development, club education, league commercials, umpiring and football operations etc. 

In addition to this new position, both Operations roles will increase from part-time roles to full time roles, whilst a new part time media support person will also be engaged. The current AFL NSW/ ACT umpiring and development staff will also remain.

It is also expected that this new model will provide clubs with much needed Affiliation Fee relief.

The new league will utilise AFL branding, and will have regional naming, which will apply to both junior and senior competitions. For the avoidance of doubt, this relates to the name and logo of the league entity only, with Black Diamond to remain in the name of senior competitions.

The next steps include members of both the Black Diamond AFL and AFL Hunter Coast voting to accept the proposal following which the new league will be established.

BDAFL President, Wal Bembic was pleased with the outcome.

"The Black Diamond AFL have always stated that a single governance model is important for the continued development of AFL in this region" Bembic said.

"In saying that however the Black Diamond AFL is very strong and independent in it's own right and the Board had a responsibility to it's members to ensure that any new model would not negatively affect them or the competitions". he added.

"I would also like to thank the AFL NSW/ACT and AFL Hunter Coast on the manner in which the negotiations were handled and look forward to the commencement of the new league and more importantly being able to focus again on the 2018 football season."

Contacts:

Wal Bembic      BDAFL President          0428 881 811
Simon Smyth    AFL NSW/ACT             0401 932 535

Cardiff follower Tom Yensch has taken out the prestigious Elliott Davey Medal as the Best and Fairest player in the Hunter Haval Black Diamond Cup competition.

Yensch received his award in front 280 guests at the Belmont 16 Footers Sailing Club.

The 23 year old, who joined Cardiff this year from Ovens and Murray club, Lavington polled 25 votes to win the award from his captain, Simon O’Brien (19 votes) with Terrigal Avoca coach, Mark Skuse in third position with 17 votes.

Yensch took the lead in Round 9 and was never headed although O’Brien and Newcastle City defender Conor Haswell drew within one vote after Round 13 before Yensch once again pulled away to win by six votes, polling the most votes for a winner since 2009 when Angus Darling won with 30 votes.

A measure of Yensch’s consistency was that he polled in 12 of the 15 games he played although he only was adjudged by the umpires to be the Best player on the Ground on four occasions including Rounds 16 and 18.

2016 winner, Jayden Rymer polled 11 votes to finish in a tie for sixth.

In other awards, Wyong Lakes ruckman, Brayden Tos took out the Granland Medal as the Best and Fairest player in Reserve Grade with the Reserve Grade award being won by Warners Bay veteran, Jeremy Buckley.

Gosford captain, Alison Parkin took out the women’s award polling 32 votes, including eight Best on Ground to defeat Nelson Bay follower, Pippa Smyth by five votes with 2016 winner, Lisa Steane, also from Nelson Bay a further five votes back.

A highlight of the night was the awarding of an AFL Merit Award for Services to football to John Sullivan, who this year umpired his 1,000th match.

Terrigal Avoca were presented with the Club Championship Trophy with Singleton winning the Administration Award for a third consecutive year.

Singleton’s, Mark Rohan was a popular winner of the James J Arnold Volunteer of the Year award.

Newcastle City youngster, Hugh Blanchfield and Nelson Bay’s, Kaitlyn Douglass took home the BDAFL Men’s and Women’s Rising Star awards as the Best First Year player whilst Conor Haswell of Newcastle City took how the Most Outstanding Men’s Young Footballer with Newcastle Nova’s Rosie Ronan-Yates taking home the women’s award.

Cardiff’s Marcus DeLeur was the winner of the BDAFL Black Diamond Cup Coaches MVP award.

Elliott Davey Medal – Black Diamond Cup Best & Fairest

Tom Yensch

Cardiff

Tom Yensh

Granland Medal – Black Diamond Plate Best & Fairest

Brayden Tos

Wyong Lakes

Brayden Tos

Women’s Best & Fairest

Alison Parkin

Gosford

Alison Parkin

Chris Arnold Medal – Reserve Grade Best & Fairest

Jeremy Buckley

Warners Bay

 

Maurice Goolagong Trophy – 
Black Diamond Cup Leading Goalkicker

Scott Reed

Killarney Vale

 

Black Diamond Plate Leading Goalkicker

Aaron Kosub

Wyong Lakes

 

Women’s Leading Goalkicker

Meaghan MacDonald

Newcastle City

 

Reserve Grade Leading Goalkicker

Michael Ryan &
Josh Murphy

Cardiff &
Cardiff

 

BDAFL Rising Star

Hugh Blanchfield

Newcastle City

 

BDAFL Women’s Rising Star

Kaitlyn Douglass

Nelson Bay

 

Most Outstanding Young Footballer

Conor Haswell

Nelson Bay

 

Most Outstanding Young Women’s Footballer

Rosie Ronan-Yates

Newcastle

 

Black Diamond Cup Coaches MVP

Marcus DeLeur

Cardiff

 

Club Championship Trophy

 

Terrigal Avoca

 

Club Administration Award

 

Singleton

 

James J Arnold Volunteer of the Year

Mark Rohan

Singleton

 

Black Diamond Cup Team of the Year

 Mens Team of the Year

GE Women’s Team of the Year

 Womens Team of the Year

AFL Merit Award

John Sullivan