Coastal Premier League (CPL) today announced that it would move straight to a final series following the end of the lockdown.
It also announced the grand final had been moved back a week to 25 September 2021.
The CPL regular season was scheduled to end on 21 August. Due to the COVID-19 global pandemic and floods earlier in the year, making many grounds unplayable, the season was extended until 4 September.
Competition administrators had set a deadline of 5 September 2021 for all unplayed matches to occur.
The NSW Government’s announcement this week that the lockdown is extended for a further two weeks meant that some matches would go unplayed. Ten matches from the first-grade regular season were lost. An additional five from reserve grade couldn’t occur.
To conclude the season with semi-finals and a grand final in both first grade and reserve grade, competition administrators have declared four finalists.
The final four in both grades was determined after unplayed matches were recorded as one all draws, in accordance with the traditions of football and the rules of the competition.
The final four in first grade are Coffs United, Coffs Tigers, Boambee and Port United. The final four in reserve grade are Coffs United, Northern Storm, Port Saints and Port United.
Finalists will resume team training on 11 September ahead of the semi-finals on 18 September. The grand finals in both grades will occur on Saturday, 25 September 2021, at C.ex Coffs International Stadium.
In the event the lockdown continues, CPL administrators will consider playing the final series in October.
Coffs United was the Premier in both first and reserve grades, coming atop the ladders in both competitions after the regular season.
Quotes attributable to: Andrew Woodward, General Manager, North Coast Football
We have a finals series with the four teams who set the pace throughout the season. There’s plenty of good football ahead of us.
If we get the opportunity, we must complete a final series. We don’t know where things are going with the pandemic. If we can play a final series in September or October, we will.
It’s a credit to all ten clubs that 96 per cent of scheduled matches were played this year. The quality has been high, the passion without question, and the standing of competition has grown.
Nothing would have made us happier than to have a complete regular season. We would have preferred that the finals were determined on the pitch rather than on paper.
We also recognise that the events beyond our control mean some teams haven’t finished where they hoped. We also know that some teams have missed a shot at finding their way into the finals.
We understand the disappointment of those disadvantaged or who missed out. These teams deserved a shot but didn’t get it. Floods, a global pandemic and a potentially short window of opportunity to play meant we had to make the difficult decision we did.
CPL finals series
Saturday, 18 September 2021
Coffs United (1) v Port United (4) at Forsyth Park (6 pm TBC)
Coffs Tigers (2) v Boambee (3) at Polwarth Drive (3 pm TBC)
Coffs United (1) v Port United (4) at Forsyth Park (4 pm TBC)
Northern Storm (2) v Port Saints (3) at Polwarth Drive (1 pm TBC)
Saturday, 25 September 2021
Winner of 1 v 4 and 2 v 3 (7 pm TBC) at C.ex Coffs International Stadium
Winner of 1 v 4 and 2 v 3 (4.45 pm TBC) at C.ex Coffs International Stadium