Points make prizes: The inferior points difference that Nambucca Heads have may cost the Roosters a finals spot.
Points make prizes: The inferior points difference that Nambucca Heads have may cost the Roosters a finals spot. Trevor Veale

CRL rules apply for semi-finals

NO playoff for fifth spot will be held prior to the commencement of the VB Gold Group 2 semi-finals.

Instead, if teams finish on level points after next Sunday’s final round of the minor premiership, a specific set of rules will determine the one side anointed to participate in the finals series and which others will be handed a watching brief.

That’s the official ruling from chief administrator Jim Anderson, moving to end the state of confusion which has engulfed the game in recent days, while overturning a convention which began with the introduction of the five-team playoff format.

“We are obligated to conduct the competition according to what’s set down in Country Rugby League’s Competition and Challenge Trophy rules,” he explained.

“Subsequent to inquiries it’s been revealed after perusing the Group’s by-laws there are no references to conducting play-offs anywhere.

“Therefore, the CRL regulations will apply.”

In 2002 Nambucca Heads and Macleay Valley finished the regular season level on 18 points in fifth spot.

The Roosters actually won one more game than the Mustangs who had two draws but in the midweek showdown, Macleay downed the Heads 16-8 before bowing out to Coffs Harbour in a 60-10 thrashing the following Saturday.

“That was in Glen Shipman’s time, before Peter O’Grady or myself occupied the chair,” Anderson said.

Should two or more teams finish equal on competition points after the August 15 round, rankings will be determined from points difference and then on for and against percentages.

In the million-to-one chance sides are still equal, tries scored, goals kicked and drop goals kicked will enter the equation, right down to a final toss of a coin.

By using the current ladder after 17 rounds, it would leave Sawtell ranked second (equal currently on 22 with Coffs Harbour) and Woolgoolga chosen as the side to progress.

Under this formula Nambucca (equal with Woopi on 18) would be the side eliminated on current percentages.

However, Orara Valley currently on 16 points and due to play the Roosters at Coronation Park this Saturday, can still provide the knockout punch should it win this game and the Seahorses lose to Port Macquarie.



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