An under-15s Goulburn Valley League netball competition has been given official approval for next year after clubs showed interest in the concept.
The idea to bring in the younger age group has been on the agenda for several years but will come into affect from next season.
The concept gathered momentum following the merger of the region’s football and netball entities into the Goulburn Valley League earlier this year.
A host of GVL clubs have already began preparing for the change and searching for new coaches and interested players.
Many clubs already enter under-15 teams into various district competitions, with Shepparton United, Shepparton Swans and Mooroopna among those that have sides playing at the Shepparton Netball Association.
With most clubs in favour of the idea, GVL chairman David Roff said the board gave the concept permission to progress.
‘‘A 15-and-under age group has been a discussion point amongst clubs over the last couple of years,’’ he said.
‘‘The GVNL put the concept to clubs for a vote last year and with the coming together of the GVFL and GVNL this season the matter was again raised with clubs for their discussion and feedback.
‘‘A significant majority of clubs were in favour of the move so the board has now endorsed it to proceed.’’
A committee made up of prominent netball figures in the region will further begin preparations for its inception.
Former Goulburn Valley Netball League president and current GVL board member Jacqui Hudgson, Netball Victoria’s Josie Logan as well as club representatives Rochelle Hannon, Stacey Cole, Kelly Hill and Colline Egglestone will all be a major part of the competition’s progression.
The under-15s division is likely to start prior to the four other grades the GVL currently accommodates.