HUNTER Rugby Union's board have endorsed a proposal from clubs to see Lake Macquarie drop out of first grade for the second half of the season but remain in premier competition rather than drop a division.
The Roos won't play in the main event after round nine, which is scheduled for June 19, but will instead filter back into second and third grades for the remainder of 2021.
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They haven't previously fielded a side in thirds this year.
Firsts and seconds have been on the end of some absolute hidings so far this campaign, featuring at least three century scorelines.
Neither team have registered a win and they have conceded a combined 1215 points from seven games.
Lake Macquarie, coming off the bye, are drawn to host Singleton at Walters Park next Saturday before the change takes place at the halfway mark of the season.
HRU president Glenn Turner said there were several considerations, including lob-sided results, safety aspects and participation for other clubs.
Turner said Lake Macquarie officials were appreciative of the move and hope to rebuild in the senior ranks next year.
The Roos have nine junior teams, ranging from under 8s to under 18s and incorporating under-13 girls.
Similar issues forced Lake Macquarie to withdraw from premier competitions midway through the 2015 season.
They returned in 2016 but started to struggle again in 2018.
The Roos bounced back to finish fifth in 2019, however, after the 2020 season was canned the majority of those players departed.
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