Tenterfield Tigers are “stuck between a rock and a hard place” with Group 19 confirming a second division competition will be introduced from next season.
The Tigers currently play in the four-team Border Rugby League competition but are inside the Group 19 boundary and are granted a release each year to play in the outside zone. At the Group’s Annual General Meeting on Sunday, a decision was made to introduce a six-team second division competition including Tenterfield, Uralla, Bingara, Bundarra, Ashford and Guyra.
Tigers president Brendan Minns said they face a dilemma with a question mark remaining over whether players will travel to participate in a stronger tournament.
“The biggest issue for us to be a part of Group 19 at this stage is our player base,” he said.
“The travel involved in Group 19 is considerably a fair bit more than what we have been in the past in regards to playing in the Border League. If we have 30 players and only 10 of them say they're keen to play Group 19 and travel well then we are not going to have a side to go to Group 19.
“That's probably the biggest determining factor in regards to where we will play next year. At the end of the day if you want to play football travel shouldn't matter but unfortunately in today's day and age it does.
Should the Tigers return to Group 19, the league tag team will also have the opportunity to take the field with the BRL not fielding sides in 2017.
“We have had ladies since we went to Group 19 in 2011 and 12, we sort of brought it to the Border League and we had a relatively strong team since its inception,” Minns said.
“It is hard because it is a massive part of our club that we missed last year as well.
“There's a lot of people that come to watch the league tag.”
As it stands, the future of the Border League competition with Tenterfield the only club to form a committee.
Stanthorpe, Killarney and Inglewood could not manage to fill executive positions at their respective AGMs.
Should they fail to form committees the BRL competition may fold, leaving Tenterfield with no choice but to play in Group 19.