The Goulburn Bears' 2021 campaign has been put on ice due to the COVID-19 outbreak across NSW.
The Waratah League Youth Men's Division Two competition, in which Goulburn plays, consists of seven teams currently in locked-down regions of NSW, which has forced its postponement until at least September.
Goulburn's last match took place on, June 26, in a narrow four-point win over the Shoalhaven Tigers.
Basketball NSW is considering two options for continuing the season in September. The first would see the current top four teams play out a finals series, while the second would attempt to condense what remains of the regular season into two or three weekends before a finals series.
The decision is expected to be made this weekend, and announced sometime in the coming week.
As the Bears currently sit at eighth on the ladder, their preference is to play as many games as they can. Goulburn coach, Eddie Teague, has made the offer to Basketball NSW to continue playing against non-locked down teams (at this stage, Queanbeyan and Moss Vale) in order to lighten the load for the rest of the competition come September.
"I think most teams will want to finish it off and keep playing, even though some of them don't have a chance to make the top four," Teague said.
"We'd probably be able to play three of those games for sure. That's what we're trying to do, is allow the country teams to keep playing those games, and when it opens back up we'll play the Sydney sides."
With respect to the rest of the competition, particularly the metropolitan teams, Goulburn has been lucky that its local competition has continued to run in recent weeks.
This, Teague said, has enabled his players to stay on the court and keep gathering more match experience despite the lack of representative games.
"For us, in country basketball, this is the first time we probably have a little advantage," he said.
"Last year, they shut all country stuff down and Sydney sides were still playing in their local competitions. This year, Sydney's shut down but we're still playing our local competition. It could probably benefit us, because at the moment they're only outside for an hour doing some exercise, whereas we're doing the same thing we've done all year.
"With country guys, the more games they play, the better they get. Once you have those layoffs of four to six weeks, it's really hard. We're so much better than we were at the start of the year because of the games we've played."
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