THE Northern Tasmanian Football Association has admitted an email clarifying its clouded finals qualification bylaws was not distributed to clubs as directed by the board in mid-August.
NTFA president Paul Reynolds told The Examiner on Wednesday that correspondence clearing up the confusion about what is required for a player to play finals was sent out.
However, on Thursday morning he was informed that the communique signed off by the board was not forwarded on following a clarification request from clubs.
“The matter had been discussed, communications drafted and ratified by the board with a direction for it to be disseminated and I was advised this morning that had not happened,” Reynolds said.
“There is obviously an administrative shortcoming that is being addressed but I have communicated to club presidents and advised them of this situation and I accept responsibility.”
It has long been the understanding that players must play at least five matches in the reserves and no more than half the season in the seniors to be eligible to play finals.
However, Old Scotch played a handful of players in the weekend’s division 2 reserves grand final that had not played five reserves matches.
NTFA bylaws 6.7, 6.8 and 6.9 contradict each other with one saying that: “A player registered prior to June 30, who has played in at least five club roster matches during the current season, is eligible to play in finals for that club.”
Others state that a player must play at least five home and away games and no more than 50 per cent in a higher grade to qualify for finals unless the club has two teams playing in the same final on the same day.
It is the NTFA’s position that any player who has played five club matches and has not over qualified is eligible to play reserves football under the existing bylaws.
“Whilst my position hasn’t changed in terms of the reading of the bylaws it does further demonstrate that we need to ensure the bylaws are reflective of the needs of the game,” Reynolds said.
“I do not believe that the ambiguities in these bylaws protect reserve footballers.”
Reynolds said the bylaws would be reviewed post season.