FULL STEAM: Wests' Ilaiasi Pongi plays against The Waves last season in the Bundaberg Rugby League finals. A grand final could be held on Saturday night next season.
FULL STEAM: Wests' Ilaiasi Pongi plays against The Waves last season in the Bundaberg Rugby League finals. A grand final could be held on Saturday night next season. Paul Donaldson BUN190817RUG6

Night final on the cards for the BRL

LEAGUE: Let there be lights.

If Bundaberg Rugby League chairman Mike Ireland has his way, the A-Grade final could be on a Saturday night next year.

Ireland returns as the chairman for next season after being voted in unopposed on Sunday at the general meeting.

Now, Ireland has 14 ideas to improve the competition with all of them to be discussed and potentially ratified at a meeting with the eight clubs in two Sunday's time in Childers.

Among the main ones is moving most matches to Saturday and hosting the grand final on a Saturday afternoon/night.

"Clubs have come to me wanting to play most matches on that day so they can have Sunday off," Ireland said.

"We think we can get a bigger turn up as well."

The only issue for Ireland is getting enough referees if all four A-Grade games are held on the day.

Ireland said some games outside Bundaberg may be moved to Sunday to suit, but almost all matches would be held on Saturday.

Spectators would also have to pay an increase at the gate, which is expected to be $1 extra than this season to cater for the extra money spent on the use of lights at Salter Oval.

Ireland also wants to increase prize money for the A-Grade competition.

Currently teams get $5000 for winning with $2000 for the runners up.

Under the new proposal, this would increase to $8000 and $3000 respectively with the extra money coming from sponsors.

The Toyota Cup would remain but the prize money allocated to that competition would transfer to the A-Grade.

The Cup would still remain with the top two sides from the first round of fixtures in the A-Grade battling for the Cup the second time each side faced each other.

"It needs to be increased," Ireland said.

"It would help the clubs stay competitive and bring it into line with other competitions in the region."

Ireland's first seven ideas:

1. All matches at Salter Oval in 2018 be played on a Saturday with a view of also having the grand final on a Saturday afternoon/night.

2. Increase cost of tickets by one dollar across the board for the extra cost of Saturday night football.

3. Increase A-Grade prize money to win the premiership to $8000 with runners up getting $3000

4. Still have the Toyota Cup but redistribute the funds towards the A-Grade premiership rather than the Cup.

5. Local BRL rules to be rewritten and a copy given to each club and approved before season starts.

6. All BRL meetings to be held on the Saturday before the days matches.

7. League executive to sign off on team sheets for A-Grade after checking the points each week. This can be done by one of the three.



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