Cutters could be back in the NDRL
LEAGUE: By the end of this week the Burnett Cutters could have a new home to play football in, and Salter Oval could host Northern Districts Rugby League matches.
The NewsMail can reveal the Queensland Rugby League Central Division is finalising a deal to have the Burnett Cutters join the NDRL and play its home matches at Salter Oval.
The NDRL was meant to have a meeting last weekend to discuss how many clubs were playing this season but the meeting was delayed after the QRL Central Division told the NDRL the Cutters could be back in the competition again.
The Cutters moved out of the competition in 2017 after not being able to find a home venue suitable to all parties.
The team played in the Bundaberg Rugby League in reserves in 2018 and last year.
Now, the team could be back, if Salter Oval becomes its home for games.
“We’re brokering a deal with the BRL for Burnett Cutters to use Salter Oval as a base,” QRL Central Division manager Rob Crow said.
“They have a field where they train at but no home ground.
“I’ve been on the phone with Mike (Ireland) about it this week.”
The sticking point at this stage is making sure NDRL games can be held at Salter Oval so that they don’t interfere with BRL matches.
Some junior matches will be held on Sunday at potentially the same time as the NDRL, if it moved to Salter Oval.
“That’s what I’m trying to achieve (it sorted out),” he said.
“Hopefully by this week it can be achieved and they will be in the competition for 2020.”
Crow said them moving to the NDRL had no contingencies for them to come back to the BRL.
If the side wanted to come back and play A-grade then it would have to discuss and overcome what is needed from the BRL to play.
“Our role is to get teams back into football,” Crow said.
NDRL chairman Neil Redfern said the league would welcome the team back if it all worked out.
“We’re quite happy if they got all of that sorted out,” he said.
“There would be no dramas for them to return.”
BRL chairman Mike Ireland said he had nothing to report when contacted today.
But he has in the past welcomed the move to potentially have the Cutters play at Salter Oval.
He said on December 11 that “we’ve offered Salter Oval for them to use if they want to play in the NDRL”.
‘They can use Salter Oval as their ground should they host matches in the NDRL.”
The Cutters were contacted for comment.