Parents forced to pay to watch their children play

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Parents of junior rugby league players as far and wide as Doyalson in the north and Umina in the south were charged an admission fee to watch their own children play grand finals.

Last season, they were charged $6 per person, this year that impost jumped to $10, with an added $2 booking fee for division one games.

Needless to say, parents of junior players are the lifeblood of the game.

These are the code’s ultimate volunteers and without them rugby league has no tomorrow.

A player’s mum and dad were slugged $22 to watch the last game of the season last Sunday.

Not much of a thank you for ferrying their budding champion to and from training twice a week and to games all over the Central Coast throughout winter.

I understand that there are costs involved for the Central Coast District Junior Rugby League in overseeing the big weekend.

Surely, a game built on working class roots maintains enough of its 1908 ethos to filter down spare change from the National Rugby League level, via the NSW Rugby League, to cover the costs of junior grand finals.

Given the income generated by the top tier of the game over many decades, much of which has allegedly been squandered by a greedy and bloated hierarchy, it’s an outrage that parents are forced in the first place to pay to watch their children play, but to then markedly increase the fee in the face of the COVID recession, that is a disgrace.

Email, Oct 7
Andrew Stark, East Gosford

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