NEW OUTLOOK: Warwick Touch Football Association president Justin Nolan is gearing up to face the challenges of returning the popular sport to the region.
NEW OUTLOOK: Warwick Touch Football Association president Justin Nolan is gearing up to face the challenges of returning the popular sport to the region.

TOUCH AND GO: Season start date in pipeline

TOUCH FOOTBALL: Initial preparations are being made for Warwick’s touch footballers to return to the field for the Wednesday night competitions.

The season was brought to halt in March after coronavirus restrictions made it impossible for the 500 plus members to continue playing.

Warwick Touch Football Association president Justin Nolan said organisers were hopeful to have players back out on the field in July, in line with stage three restrictions – like hockey and AFL.

“I’m just trying to get word on what we have to do, because we have a lot more people playing at a time,” he said.

“We’re just checking out the distancing and whether we can satisfy all of the requirements.”

Despite members initial disappointment not being able to play, Nolan said many were understanding of the situation, which was out of organisers control.

“We haven’t had anyone question just yet, so I guess everyone understands that we’ll be ready to come back and get things underway,” he said.

“I think a lot of teams we have, are mates playing together, some of it’s family, so it’s not just the physical running around.

“There’s a social side to it all too – and because it’s a fairly mixed competition with males and females both interacting, which is good.”

Under the current stage two restrictions, there can be no more than 20 people gathered in designated zones for non-contact training – forcing the touch season to remain grounded.

Just two games into the first season of the year, Nolan said navigating rules on player movements pre and post-game will be difficult upon their return.

“We only have two timeslots, so we’re going to have about 200 people there,” he said.

“But, in saying that, they’re going to be spread across a number of fields, so there’s probably only going to be 50-60 on a field at any one time.

“The biggest issue would be at the end of games when there’s a lot of people moving about, but that won’t be for very long.”

Hopeful the cooler nights will deter players from lingering after games, Nolan is awaiting advice from National Touch Rugby Australia – the governing body – and the Queensland Government.

“I just need to get advice as to whether (the field positions are) OK, and if not how to set all of that in place,” he said.

“And whether we have to make accommodations and that kind of thing so we can get back underway.

“We really hope we’re going to have everyone come back, too.”