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New division set to spark local interest

OPPORTUNITY: The WDJRL hopes the new announcement will keep players in the game after progressing through U16s.
OPPORTUNITY: The WDJRL hopes the new announcement will keep players in the game after progressing through U16s. Gerard Walsh

RUGBY LEAGUE: Warwick and District Junior Rugby League has announced a major change ahead of the 2018 season.

An U18s division for boys was announced by the WDJRL in an aim to provide further opportunities for players after they turn 17.

Previously players had to make the move to the TRL to continue playing in the region.

WDJRL president Dave Landers said it is hoped the move will keep players in the game for longer.

"This new competition will allow players who do not have access to an under 18s team now or may not wish to play at the TRL level, to continue to play for their local club,” Landers said.

"The hope with this new competition is that it will provide all eligible players who have come through our junior system an opportunity to continue to play the game they all love.”

Wattles senior club president Glyn Rees said the move was a positive for rugby league in the region, however was cautious about the ramifications for the club.

"To have non-playing kids playing football is good for rugby league,” Rees said.

"It is a positive in terms of promoting rugby league and opportunity within the game.

"The arrival of the new comp may pose some problems for achieving numbers for Wattles seniors club, as it isn't easy in rural areas.”

It is still unclear the amount of teams who will compete in the new division, with a decision expected to be made in the coming weeks.

The announcement comes fresh after the news of an additional U14s girls league tag division and the existing U16s age group being raised to U17s.

Topics:  junior rugby league rugby league warwick and district junior rugby league wdjrl