There’s nothing like flying back into the country and having to deal with football issues.
Just ask Dubbo Rhinos president Ian Burns.
Burns arrived home from an overseas holiday on Monday to news his club had been docked two points by Central West Rugby Union for failing to put a third grade side on the park last weekend.
Fielding a third grade isn’t a requirement for entry into the Blowes Clothing Cup competition, and the response from the Rhinos has been swift.
They have withdrawn from the third grade competition for the remainder of the season, and asked for a response as to why they have lost the competition points.
“Can someone please explain to me why we are being deducted two points for not fielding third grade on the weekend when third grade is not a required grade to begin with?,” an email from a Rhinos representative to Central West Rugby Union read.
“We tried to field third grade in our first game and we didn’t have the numbers to continue.
“Take this as the Rhinos officially pulling third grade (a grade we were still trying to form) from the Blowes Clothing Cup.”
Indeed, the Rhinos did have a third grade side on the paddock in round one again Orange Emus, but they have failed to field a side since.
Having only just arrived back to Dubbo, Burns said he hasn’t had a chance to speak with officials about the matter but admitted he was hopeful it was an oversight.
“It’s a bit disappointing to get back and have this happening,” Burns said, who was trying to get in contact with Central West on Wednesday.
“We’ve fulfilled our requirements of first grade, second grade and colts every week. We tried to have a third grade side in round one but we had blokes backing up into seconds and firsts and it just didn’t work.
“We were trying … but we’ve pulled ourselves out of third grade now.”
With third grade off the agenda for the remainder of 2017, the task for the Rhinos now is to try and get their competition points back.
The Rhinos have won two of their four first grade matches so far this season but are now two points behind Orange City, who have also won two games and picked up two bonus points.
“Our coaches are dumbfounded by it, so I can only imagine how disappointed out players will be,” Burns said.
“Hopefully it’s just an error and will be rectified because we’ve been going well.”
Central West Rugby Union president Frank Newman wouldn’t comment on the matter.
Attempts to contact chief executive Peter Veenstra were unsuccessful.