The Dubbo Netball Association have made the difficult decision to end their season after the COVID-19 outbreak in regional NSW.
After 12 rounds of play, the competition was suspended on August 7 with the team on the highest number of points after those rounds being declared the premiers for the 2021 season.
Dubbo Netball publicity officer Ange Read feels it was an easy decision to finish the season with just two matches remaining until the finals series began.
"It was pretty unanimous across all the clubs," she said.
"We had a committee meeting last week and everyone agreed it is not safe enough to continue.
"Obviously, we have to follow the public health orders and cannot return to community sport for a while yet.
"By the time we are allowed to return to community sport, you are risking injuries and things like that."
Read believes it was important to make a decision early rather than having players and coaches waiting for the season to continue should the COVID-19 situation improve in the next few weeks.
"People can continue on with their lives and not have to worry about that," she said.
This means, for the fifth straight season the Fusion Heat are the Rawson Homes Premiership A Grade champions, making them one of the best teams the competition has ever seen.
Heat coach Tash Robinson knows it is not the way her side were hoping to finish the season but they understand why the decision had to be made.
"It's definitely bittersweet," she said.
"It's definitely not the way we wanted to have a crack at the title.
"It is what it is and the world is a bit crazy at the moment.
"And if that's the decision that keep everyone safe than it is the one we should go with."
Robinson credited the Dubbo Netball Association for their efforts making a decisions quickly rather than waiting for the current COVID-19 restrictions to change in the region and state.
"The committee were really clear and really good about that,"
"They got together and decided a decision needed to be made.
"It's not really fair to have people sitting around and wandering what's going to happen.
"We also don't want to be in the middle of a pandemic telling people to stay home while also telling them to prepare for grand-finals in a month.
"It's irresponsible, so I think they made the right decision by calling it."
Fusion Heat lost just the one game this season which came in a 48-45 match against the Narromine Hawks back in round 3 of the season but Robinson knows her side had a good enough season to be crowned premiers.
"While we had a strong season, we peaked at the right time," she said.
"It's hard to comment on because it's not the way you want to win something and have your name on a premiership.
"But it's just a crazy time at the moment, it's just very unfortunate."
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