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Report on the IGA NSW Premier Leagues 2013 Season launch

NSW Leagues go National!

(NSW top league mens trophy)

The 2013 NSW winter season was launched on Tuesday 12 March, at the WatervieW function centre at Bi-Centennial Park, Homebush Bay.

In attendance were coaches of most of the participating NSW National Premier League Mens 1 teams, as well as other selected players, FNSW officials, and media.

The Marketing Manager of IGA spoke about the company's support for grassroots football in being this year's sponsor.

With launch MC Simon Hill having filled the audience in on some potted facts about the long history of NSW competitive football, back to 1893 in fact, the historic nature of this year's competitions was stressed by a number of speakers in panels sessions, from National Men's coach Holger Osiek, and Women's coach Hesterine de Reus, to A-League coaches Frank Farina (Sydney FC) and Tony Popovic (Western Sydney Wanderers FC) (Mariners coach Graham Arnold was in Japan on ACL duty).

"Under the new National Premier Leagues guidelines, the elite programme and comnpetitions in NSW will continue to provide the National squads with the talent and experience to grow in both the men's and women's compeitions". The NPL model will bring national guidelines for the state and territory elite football club competitions for the first time.

The key features of the NPL are: a common nationally recognised brand and logo, qualified technical directors at each club, consistent player pathways in each state and territory, players points system (PPS) to encourage youth development, revised commpensation systems to reward clubs producing A-League players, improved finance and business planning under a club licensing scheme.

This year's top men's league, National Premier Leagues Mens 1 will be a tough affair! The usual suspects in Bonnyrigg White Eagles, Sydney United, Blacktown City, Marconi Stallions and Sydney Olympic start each season with a strong case for a tilt at the title, though the likes of clubs such as APIA Leichhardt Tigers could state their own claims for a strong league run. South Coast Wolves grow stronger, and new comers Central Coast Mariners Academy will seek to match them.

The NSW Women's Premier League was also featured at the launch - it was generally agreed that the standard is improving each year. The Women’s Premier League commences on the 24th of March.
Download or print the guide: NPL-NSW-Womens-Premier-League

(Philip Makrys nets a shot, to earn money for charity from IGA)

Round 1 of the NSW National Premier League Mens 1 commences on Saturday the 16th of March with two matches highlighted before the remaining round ends on Sunday the 27th of March.

Saturday 16th March: Blacktown Spartans FC vs Marconi Stallions SC at Blacktown Football Park at 7pm, and down south South Coast Wolves FC host Sutherland Sharks FC in the derby at John Creham Park, Cringila at 7pm.

The second level of elite football, 'Mens 2' (old Super League), commences on the Saturday, 23rd of March. View or download the fixtures here: Access to NSW league fixtures

Report and photos by Chris Dunkerley 12 March 2013

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