Chris McKivat (8)
I would think the way forward would be;
Div 1 - 4 Grades + Colts (10 teams)
Forest (ex Div 2)
St Pats (ex Div 2)
Hunters Hill (ex Div 2)
Balmain drops out for obvious reasons. Forest, St Pats and Hunters Hill come up after a solid 2019 season in Div 2 for all 3 clubs on the field and numbers wise to make Kentwell a 10 team competition again. Div 1 restructured to only 4 grades as the Sutherland Cup is slowly dying off (only 5-6 of the 10 teams can consistently put out a 5ths).
Div 2 - 3 Grades + Colts (8 teams)
Redfield (ex Div 3)
Blacktown (ex Div 3)
Newport (ex Div 3)
Redfield, Blacktown and Newport make the jump up from Div 3 after very strong seasons across the board. Div 2 restructured to drop the Richardson Cup (4ths) so there is no extra obligation to the new clubs to put on another grade since only 4 of the 8 teams here can field a 4th grade currently anyway. Safer to go with less grade numbers than more and have clubs over extend themselves. The clubs that can field a 4ths currently would be farmed into Halligans.
Div 3 - 3 Grades - No Colts (9 teams)
Balmain (ex Div 1)
Sydney Harlequins (ex Div 4)
Briars (ex Div 4)
Canterbury (ex Div 4)
Macquarie Uni (ex Div 4)
This is about where Balmain belong after their 2019 (no colts for a majority of the year and only 2 grades for the last half of the season) They should be able to find another 15 guys to run around on a Saturday arvo to make up a 3rds. Quins, Briars, Canterbury and Mac Uni come up as all clubs have proven they can hold 3 grades easily. I had to drop the colts out since 5 of 9 clubs have shown they can sustain a side. These 5 teams would form the basis of Radford Cup. Scheduling might be a bit of a pain in the ass here with a bye week but the clubs all seem to be where they belong.
Div 4 - 2 Grades (8 teams)
Brothers (ex Div 3)
Convicts (ex Div 5)
Mosman (5th and 6th grades)
Colleagues (5th and 6th grades)
Burraneer (ex Div 5 - colts & player overflow creates 2nd grade)
Chatswood (ex Div 6 - colts & player overflow creates 2nd grade)
Oatley, Irish and Saints stay in Div 4 and Brothers join them after all their 3rds went missing towards the back end of the year or they just never had them to begin with. Relying on Mosman and Colleagues to continue their strong numbers each week to bolster up competition numbers, they would play at home on opposite weeks to their Div 1 teams. Burraneer and Chatswood make the leap after showing they can field a colts for 2019, generally the 2nd grade level is about what Radford Cup colts is so this should be a good fit.
Div 5a - 1 Grade (6 teams - "A" graded competition)
Merrylands (ex Div 4)
Merrylands moves back down after experimenting in Div 4 and not much coming of it. Engadine, North Cronulla, Raptors, Manly and Lane Cove all had fairly strong showings so are graded in the "A" competition. Only a 6 team competition but is probably for the best considering adding a 7th team would put a bye week in. Less byes the better.
Div 5b - 1 Grade (8 teams - "B" graded competition)
Kings (ex Halligan)
Menai (ex Halligan)
Petersham (5th grade)
Waverley (5th grade)
Maccabi, Dukes, Wakehurst and Renegades all had either 50% win/loss record or less so get thrown into the "B" grade. Kings and Menai both showed they could maintain a side each week in Halligans so should be encouraged to join the fold. Petersham and Waverley both had 5 grades consistently throughout the season in Div 1 and not much looks to change here. Half times changed to 30 (possibly 35) mins for a more social competition closer to the grade that these teams should probably find themselves. To cater for Petersham and Waverley, game times moved from 3.15 to 2.10, this allows the 5ths to stay involved with their Div 1 club on game days at home (something like - 4ths @ 9.40, Colts @ 10.35, 3rds @ 11.50, 2nds @ 12.55, 5 "B" @ 2.10, 1sts @ 3.15)
Radford Cup (8 teams)
Uni of Wollongong
Any other clubs with a colts side not already in a competition.
Now my knowledge of Radford Cup is sketchy at best but all 8 clubs have shown they can field a colts so having a proper 14 week competition in line with the rest of Subbies would help.
Halligan Cup (currently 9 teams, in order of Division restructure)
Blue Mountains 5ths
Any other clubs with a surplus grade.
This is where the extra grades will have to try and survive. Its not ideal but it seems to be the safest way to go. If it is run similar to what Halligans was in 2018 (i.e. proper competition structure from Subbies with a draw) then this could have legs. It would allow teams to play with their main club a majority of the weeks at home if Subbies can work the draw in the right way.
Another option is to throw teams who can definitely field a team week in and week out to be added into the Div 5 "B" grade with preference to the 3 Div 1 clubs purely for scheduling and ground purposes.
Is it a perfect fix? Probably not. Will all clubs be happy? Again, probably not. However it seems to be the most painless and logical way forward that allows clubs to continue to exist where they belong rather than having teams like Brothers struggle to throw 3 grades out each week and seeing as though Div 1 would move to 10 clubs, not all of them will be able to safely carry a 5ths. From what is laid out above, it helps teams at the top end of town by having consistent games for their lower grades so players don't leave and helps the bottom half of the division structure by bridging the gap between Div 5/6 and Div 4 that currently exists.
Any thoughts, fixes, questions? Is it a shit idea or does it actually have legs?
I see what your trying to do re: Halligans with those clubs with extra grades, but from personal experience a lot of the guys in those teams simply wont travel away from the rest of their club to play, they'll just put themselves as unavailable when that's on the cards. Those players will end up walking away, not just to to another club, but away from the game altogether.
There isn't a perfect solution, thats just one of the issues unfortunately....