RugbyWA will introduce a new competition structure for the 2024 Fortescue Premier Grade season.
With eleven teams in the Fortescue Premier Grade, the new structure aims to create an exciting, new format for the season, providing more opportunities for clubs to participate in competitive matches and to progress to the finals series, whilst prioritising player welfare.
RugbyWA’s Operations Manager, Jason Marrable, stated that the changes come after RugbyWA's Board undertook a review of the senior competition structure.
"A working group was tasked with developing a competition structure for the 2024 season and beyond, which focused on defining key deliverables, in addition to aligning with RugbyWA’s strategic ambitions and plans for growth.
"A new competition structure which encourages meaningful, fair and equitable competition was required, whilst taking into account player welfare.
"The new competition structure needed to promote competitive matches between teams, while additionally providing clubs the aspiration to improve both on and off the field."
The first eleven rounds of the season will see each team play each other once, before they are split into two conference groups for the remaining five rounds. Last season’s Top 6 will split into Conference A, and the remainder into Conference B.
At the end of the regular season, the teams will reunite, with the top 4 teams in Conference A and the top 2 from Conference B progressing to finals. The top 2 teams from Conference A will advance straight to the semi-finals, whilst the best of Conference B will compete against the winner of the third and fourth place teams from Conference A for a place in the semi finals.
Winners from here will progress to the Grand Final.
Each following season, teams will have the opportunity to change conferences, with the best of Conference B entering Conference A, and the sixth placed team from Conference A entering Conference B.
Marrable is looking forward to this new structure, hoping it will encourage greater competition leading up to the finals.
"I'm looking forward to seeing the new finals format. With more finals spots up for grabs, it will mean more matches that have meaning later in the season, with more knockout rugby and more at stake.
"The movement of teams from Conference A and Conference B will create more jeopardy, meaning every game this season will count, for all clubs.
The new competition structure will be implemented from Round 1 of the 2024 Fortescue Premier Grade season.
For any enquiries regarding this new structure, please contact email@example.com.