Orange City Lions' halfback Tom Nell wouldn't kick up a fuss if the 2020 Blowes Clothing Cup season was put on ice until next year after the Cowra Eagles became the first club to pull the pin on the shortened winter of rugby on Monday afternoon.
Eagles' president Ian Robertson cited the season's late start date as one of the major deterrents for his club and Nell's in agreement with Cowra, suggesting the kick-off time, along with the size of the season, has him feeling lethargic about the looming campaign.
"I can understand where Cowra's coming from and I wouldn't be surprised if Forbes pulls out too," he said.
"It's not going to be much of a season in my eyes," Nell said.
"If City was to win the premiership this season, it wouldn't feel real. It's not the real competition - they might as well call it."
Despite the lack of enthusiasm towards 2020, Nell and his teammates have been hard-at-work for the best part of a month, getting stuck into a one-dimensional training routine.
"It's pretty repetitive, it's just been fitness the whole time and we can't do contact either," he said.
"We've been getting good numbers to training so everyone's keen but it doesn't feel like the same competition."
The Blowes Clothing Cup committee is set to release its official draw on Friday and Nell's not looking forward to scanning through the season schedule.
"If you're playing four games and having a bye then another four games before the finals, it's just not a true competition," he said.
"I understand they want to play just to keep the ball rolling.
"I'm going to play but I'm in two minds at the moment."
Nell understands that for a lot of people, the chance to play any rugby at all is crucial but he's not sure about risking an injury in a lesser season.
"I'd risk my well-being for a well-earned premiership and a full season," he said.
"I haven't won a game for two years so it's just all a bit hard right now... I'm not feeling the motivation.
"It's freezing at this time of the year and it's hard to get up and go to training when you don't know if and when you're going to play."
As builder amid a pandemic, Nell believes the importance of his health is at an all-time high as he anticipates the flow-on effect from COVID-19 to hit his industry in the coming months.
"There's people that lost their jobs at the start of it but I think it'll damage us later on," he said.
"People won't be looking to build a house for a while now."
The Blowes Clothing Cup had originally planned for a ten-week season featuring six clubs but after Cowra's withdrawal there are two proposals currently being looked at by the five clubs still taking part.