The Western Region Football League is set for divisional changes but not as first thought.
A report commissioned by the league and reported on by Star Weekly in September proposed division 1 change to a 10-team competition. The report named the Western Region Football Netball Review Draft Recommendations also called for division 3 to be scrapped.
However, Star Weekly understands the report’s recommendations are not going to be fully endorsed by the league, with multiple clubs confirming to this masthead that division 1 will instead be a nine team competition.
Hoppers Crossing coach Jared Polec confirmed his side would remain in division 1 despite finishing bottom this year. Division 2 premiers Parkside will make the jump up, but unlike in the proposal Albion will remain in division 2.
Division 1 teams are set to play 16 matches, with every club playing each other twice, and the top five playing off in finals, up from the top four system that has been in place this year.
For the 2025 season the league is expected to increase the top flight to 10 teams with 2024’s division 2 premiers to make the move up.
The number of teams in division 2 next year is still yet to be determined if it remains two divisions.
Currently there are 13 teams, however there are two teams making a push to enter the league.
Glen Orden is attempting to return to the WRFL after a hiatus in 2023.
Riddell District Football League club the Western Rams have also expressed their interest in having a senior side in the league next season. Current WRFL clubs are set to vote on if the Rams join the league at its annual general meeting on December 5.
As reported by Star Weekly, the report said the WRFL will work closely and provide club development staffing resources to those clubs that may need extra assistance if they are to move from division 3 into division 2.
“It is evident that youth football must be a key area of focus of the league for the future sustainability of clubs of the WRFL,” it said.
“There are some clubs with no pathways from juniors to youth football at all, some that require strengthening of relationships between juniors and seniors and others that require assistance in recruiting and retaining players.
“There was an overwhelming amount of feedback that the grading for junior grades of football is currently not working as well as it could be.”
As of November the current proposed division 1 teams are, Werribee Districts, Point Cook, Altona, Yarraville Seddon Eagles, Caroline Springs, Spotswood, Point Cook Centrals, Hoppers Crossing and Parkside.
Division 2 would consist of Albion, Newport, Sunshine, Wyndhamvale, North Footscray, Braybrook, Suns, Albanvale, Sunshine Heights, West Footscray, Tarneit, Laverton Magpies and North Sunshine.
The WRFL was contacted for comment.