2021 Season Abandoned

With current lockdown restrictions in Victoria to remain in place beyond this week, the 2021 VFL season has been abandoned effective immediately.

Lockdown had initially brought a premature end to the home and away season at the close of Round 16, with Box Hill third on the ladder on a match ratio basis.

A planned top eight finals series was tentatively booked, fixturing the Hawks to play a home Qualifying Final against Williamstown this weekend. The competition had since contracted to a top four format, pairing the remaining teams off for two Preliminary Finals.

Today’s State Government announced timelines for the easing of restrictions ultimately claimed what remained of the finals series.

“It goes without saying we’re disappointed that our 2021 campaign – and the season itself – won’t continue. But we understand it’s the right decision,” said Daniel Napoli, Box Hill Hawks General Manager – VFL and VFLW.

“Like our rivals, everything we do and every decision we make is in pursuit of the dais and the cup at the end of the season; and, like our fellow finalists we were committed to finishing what we started.

“But, as everyone in the community would be well aware, ongoing complications arising from the suite of COVID–19 protocols and restrictions have made staging second tier or community sports impractical.

“Simply and regrettably, today’s decision is the only course of action.”

Napoli took the opportunity to acknowledge and thank those who made the season a reality, including league administrators and the Hawks family.

“Everyone involved in the 2021 VFL season deserves a great amount of credit for the volume of work done on and off the field to get the year away.

“To re-launch the competition with a truly national model was as ambitious and exciting an improvement the second tier has seen in many years. It elevated the VFL to the premier development pathway in the game.

“Reflecting on the 2021 season I’m so proud of our Box Hill family. Top-to-bottom, our playing and coaching staff, off-field personnel and volunteers have been fantastic.

“I take this opportunity to thank all of our people for their commitment and professionalism in ever-changing and challenging circumstances.

“Lead by Sam Mitchell, his staff, Damian Mascitti and his leadership group, the willingness to adapt to whatever the season threw our way was outstanding.

The Box Hill Hawks will formally celebrate the season in the coming weeks and recognize the achievements of our people.

“We’ve had such a terrific year as a football club, and I hope our people have enjoyed the journey as much as I have.

“We’ve seen a number of our staff graduate our program into positions in elite sport, which is the reason we exist. We’re so proud of the pathway we can provide players, coaches and support staff and in that way 2021 was a sensational year.

“We’ll work on a way to come together as a group over the coming weeks and celebrate the year. Before we know it, we’ll be eyeing off 2022.”

Similar Posts