The Burnett Cutters paid tribute to Patrick Witcherley earlier this year. The side is now fighting to be in the BRL for next year.
The Burnett Cutters paid tribute to Patrick Witcherley earlier this year. The side is now fighting to be in the BRL for next year.

BRL or bust for the Burnett Cutters as it fights for survival

LEAGUE: ‘We were left quite frustrated by the whole ordeal.’

Burnett Cutters president Casey Doherty believes the club was not given a fair go at trying to get into the Bundaberg Rugby League competition for next year.

The side, along with the Isis Devils, were rejected from joining the BRL for next year in A-grade and other competitions after the clubs and board voted on it.

The BRL decided it wanted six teams in the competition and admitted it had doubts about the long term prospects of each club surviving past 2020.

It is something the Cutters reject.

“We were under the assumption that we needed X amount of players, which we provided,” Doherty said.

“Now they only want six teams.

“We fit the criteria they wanted and what they needed us to do to play.

“Then it seemed they moved the goalposts again.”

Doherty said he wasn’t surprised by what has happened.

“This has happened year in, year out, we get treated like this,” he said.

“We helped everyone, including Hervey Bay in 2018 and now no one wants to help us out.

“We’re only here to grow rugby league and play.”

Doherty said the club would appeal the decision to the Queensland Rugby League Central Division and go higher if it rejects the appeal.

“We’re willing to go to the end of the earth to get the decision in our favour,” he said.

“Hopefully it doesn’t come that far and common sense can be sorted out.

“We bring a lot of fans, supporters, gate takings and sponsorship.

“The BRL can’t afford to throw that out of the window.”

Doherty said the club would not be playing in the Northern Districts Rugby League if the decision wasn’t reversed.

This is even if the concessions, which included finding a home ground for the club, are lifted. “It’s not an option,” Doherty said.

“The players don’t want to play in the competition.

“From a sponsors point of view they don’t want us in there either.

“There’s lots of factors in it and it doesn’t suit us and what we want to do.”

Both Isis and Burnett Cutters are expected to lodge the appeal in the next few days before the end of the year.



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