While they know their hands are tied and it's in the best interests of everyone right now, Dubbo Rhinos president Ian Burns admits the immediate halt to all pre-season activities has hit the club hard.
"One hundred percent, it's tough," Burns said.
The club was looking strong in terms of numbers and talented young players heading into their pre-season trial in Blayney this weekend, a trip that now likely won't happen after the start of play was pushed back to May by the Australian Rugby Union and New South Wales Rugby Union governing bodies.
"I've said to anyone that's asked, this is probably the best pre-season we've had for quite a number of years," Burns said.
"We had great numbers, regularly getting around fifty at training and a lot of young fellas, some really good quality players there."
The Rhinos made a good showing of their new-look outfit at the Ella 7s, but all training has been cancelled in line with the prevention measures hitting all clubs and sporting codes across the region.
"As per the ARU we've suspended all training and our trial, we were heading down to Blayney, that's obviously been canned and we won't be going," Burns said.
Despite the crackdown, Burns and the coaches are trying to keep everyone motivated and fit in the hopes that they'll be able to make good on all the promise shown when play hopefully kicks off later in the year.
"No team training, if players are approaching us about training, we're encouraging them to do their own with a few friends, we want them to keep some form of level of fitness so as not to waste the previous three months," Burns said.
"It's a devastating blow, not only for ourselves but for our code and all codes, but unfortunately it's an unprecedented thing and we're all on new ground, so we have to do the best we can to help stop it," Burns said.
While there's been no concrete word yet on when the Central West's Rugby Union competitions are likely, or aiming, to resume, Burns says that it's hard to picture a season being played if the starting date continues to be pushed back.
"Like a lot of towns and cities, there's discussion about pushing it back months into summer, on paper it's a great idea, but you've got guys who are committed to other sports, that'll affect a lot of towns that have football ovals and cricket fields in the same place," Burns said.
"It's hard to see how that happens."
Despite the difficulty, Burns says the club is remaining committed to their social organising.
"It's going to restrict our social side to a degree," Burns said."
"We'll endeavour to keep the palying group together, in some form of friendship and mateship."