Clubs back Macleay Valley Mustangs' Group 3 return

They want in again: The Macleay Valley Mustangs are seeking a return to the Group 3 competition.
They want in again: The Macleay Valley Mustangs are seeking a return to the Group 3 competition.

PORT Macquarie rugby league clubs are welcoming the possible return of the Macleay Valley Mustangs to the Group 3 competition.

The Macleay Valley Mustangs are in talks with Group 3 Rugby League, Country Rugby League and the clubs to secure their position in the 2016 season.

The reaction has been good, with clubs including the Port City Breakers backing the Mustangs in their return.

Breakers president Geoff Kelly welcomed the return of the Mustangs.

"They've fixed their issues and we'd love to have them back in 2016," Kelly said.

The Mustangs were excluded from the 2015 competition by the Group 3 Rugby League management in October 2014 after losing all criteria points following incidents during the season.

After some last ditch efforts by the Mustangs committee to be reinstated into the League before the start of the 2015 season, Group 3 Rugby League president Wayne Bridge informed the club that its protests fell on deaf ears.

"The Macleay Mustangs put their case to all the clubs and committee and then it was put to a secret ballot," Bridge said at the time.

"Unfortunately, the ballot was 15 to five against the Macleay Valley entering the Group 3 competition."

In early September, Bridge called on clubs to listen to what Macleay Valley had to say when the club seeks to gain a place in the 2016 competition at the group's annual meeting.

It's set down for Sunday, November 15 at the Wingham Services Club.

With less than two months before Group 3 Rugby League makes a decision as to whether to let the Mustangs back into the league, the Macleay Argus asked Mustangs secretary, Bruce Cain, what has been done to bring the local side back onto the field.

"We would like to bring an entirely professional outlook to the Mustangs in 2016," Cain said.

"We are currently putting all new policies and procedures in place that have never been there before and run the game from a 21st century perspective.

"Our first move however was to look at our structure and bring new blood into the Mustangs committee."

The Mustangs had their annual general meeting earlier this month and a number of new committee members came on board including a new president and treasurer and a new first grade and reserve grade coach.

"We have got Steve Moir as our president who is well established in the local business community and is well known and respected throughout the town," Cain said.

"We have Maxine Mackenzie as our new treasurer and she has been involved as secretary and treasurer with the show society and is again well known around town.

"It is really important to establish a good base with the committee so that everyone can have confidence in moving forward and get us back into playing the competition.

"One of the issues that came out of Group 3 Rugby League was strength in our committee and I believe that is what we have done and we also now have a new coaching structure."

This story Clubs back Macleay Valley Mustangs' Group 3 return first appeared on Port Macquarie News.