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New ball game

Tuesday, 26th March, 2013

Trial matches will be held next month before the season starts on May 3. Trial matches will be held next month before the season starts on May 3.

The Broken Hill Soccer Association (BHSA) will go into the season with new ideas and some fresh faces at the helm.

The association has inducted new committee members at its Annual General Meeting, including its first female president, Marg Symes.

The appointment is a watershed moment for the sport, and BHSA Secretary, Lisa Baker, predicted Ms Symes would provide sound guidance for soccer in the city.

"Marg brings a wealth of knowledge to the position, she has been a long serving member of the Celtic Soccer Club and has held positions with the association for a number of years," said Ms Baker.

"She has significant involvement in a number of community groups and gives tirelessly to many organisations within Broken Hill and the region.

"Marg has a strong focus on governance and structure within the organisation and is passionate about developing the gamefrom a grassroots level through to our senior grades.

"She will also place a great deal of emphasis on respect and all coaches, officials, players and parents illustrating good sportsmanship on and off the field."

Ms Symes said she was looking forward to the task ahead, and welcomed the support she had already received from her peers.

"The association is in a pretty good place, everyone works well together so hopefully it won't be too hard of a job," she laughed.

"Everyone has been great so far ... I'll just take it all in my stride and we'll do what needs to be done."

In other soccer news:

* Despite some setbacks with the soccer ground's sub-surface irrigation system, the BHSA has been working tirelessly to ensure the playing surface is in the best condition possible.

* The association will assume management of the referee group to ensure a professional, cohesive structure that will allow for greater training and the development of skills and fitness for the referees.

* The need for clubs to provide assistant referees for all matches will continue in the 2013 season unless there are significant increases in referee numbers.

* It remains necessary for anyone running a line to be competent with a sound understanding of the off side rule and be 14 years for junior, women's or B grade matches and 17 years or older for an A grade match. Training can be provided for clubs or individuals.

* The season will start with a trial match on the weekend of April 5 followed by a second trial match after the school holidays on the weekend of the April 26. Round 1 of the season will start on Friday, May 3.

* The BHSA will again be using the national online registration database through myfootballclub.com.au this year and all players must be registered online prior to the start of round three to be eligible to play.

* The changes to smoking legislation at sporting venues will be reflected at the soccer grounds and smoking is no longer permitted within the grounds.

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