Central West Rugby Union CEO has a big job ahead of him in season 2018

TRADING PLACE: CSU Bathurst's Lochie Robinson, Narromine's Ryan Pratten, Cowra half Jimmy Montgomery and Blayney gun Cam Hobby in action for their sides.
TRADING PLACE: CSU Bathurst's Lochie Robinson, Narromine's Ryan Pratten, Cowra half Jimmy Montgomery and Blayney gun Cam Hobby in action for their sides.

One look at the resume of Matt Tink and you wonder why he’s being unveiled as new Central West Rugby Union chief executive officer and not banging on the door of the ARU.

Australian rugby needs a savior, right?

The Wallabies did only beat Wales, after all.

And they did that minus their best player, Israel Folau, who decided he’d rather be at Flemington than playing rugby for his country.

But back to Tink: Australian Rugby Union level three coach.

He holds a talent identification and development certificate from the University of Queensland.

He’s formerly a scrum coach for both the Melbourne Rebels and Western Force. He’s the current forwards coach for the Honda Heat in Japan.

A past regional rugby manager for NSW Waratahs and ex-coach education manager at the Western Force.

He’s had playing stints with Eastwood, West Harbour and Southern Districts, a year with the NSW Waratahs in 1997 and earned national caps at an under 19s and under 21s level.

There’s Dubbo Roos and Blue Bulls coaching gigs in there as well, just in case you were wondering if there was a connection to the region for the new CWRU big kahuna.

There’s plenty of other voluntary roles, accolades and professional experience listed in his repertoire as well.

Really, the Central West Rugby Board nailed the brief when filling the position.

Tink will take over from Peter Veenstra in February after his contract with the Honda Heat expires and his three-year tenure as the boss of the Central West Rugby Union begins.

And at that point, you get the feeling the fun will really begin for Tink in his new role.

Tink is on decent money with the CWRU.

Outgoing chief Peter Veenstra made no secret of the fact that such a high calibre candidate would need to be paid accordingly to ensure rugby union in this region was in good hands.

And while Tinks hands may be the safest for rugby in the region moving forward, there’s plenty of work for the new CEO to do.

At the same press conference, Veenstra outlined the new structure of the CWRU’s competitions, the same competitions Tink will soon be overseeing.

Six teams in the top tier, another six in the bottom and then your small-town teams in the GrainCorp Cup.

We knew that already – the move designed to avoid blow-out scorelines and negate clubs forfeiting grades they’re battling to field teams in.

Great in theory.

We’ll have a clearer view on just how well the format works come the mid-way point of the season.

But the early indications aren’t great.

CSU Bathurst has the player numbers to field the three teams – first grade, second grade and colts - required to play in the top tier, but the students believe the club won’t be competitive against the best sides in the zone.

They’re now in tier two.

Filling the void left by CSU will be Cowra, a club that regularly failed to field a colts side in 2017 and will reportedly again battle to find enough under 20s players to fill a team next winter.

But they’re in the big leagues anyway. 

CSU’s colts will take the place of the Eagles juniors that won’t be there.

Keeping up?

Forbes is also battling for colts players heading into next season, while the two clubs that have the most potential moving into a colts competition are Dubbo Rhinos and Narromine – their junior sides competed in the 2017 under 17s grand final.

But both Narromine and Rhinos are in the second tier - a competition with no colts grade – for the next two seasons.

And six team competitions, instead of the 10 clubs we had last season, over three regular season rounds … it’s a touch monotonous, don’t you think?

At the end of the day, the Blowes Clothing needed at least eight sides moving forward. Preferably 10, really.

Knocking four clubs back and allowing them to field less teams, instead of encouraging them to field more, will only hurt rugby in the region in the long run.

Ask anyone who’s run a footy club, any club, really, and they’ll tell you how hard it is to build a team back up after its gone. 

It’s a back-breaking task. Often an impossible one.

And now Tink arrives – a man seemingly capable of helping clubs foster talent and grow the game and a handful of teams, that could have done with his help, have already been completely wiped out.

The trigger has been pulled 12 months too early.

It’s clear Tink is the right man for the job, there’s no mistaking that.

But it’s also clear it’s a mighty big job the former Roos coach now has for the next three seasons.

This story At the end of the day: A new dawn for code, but big job ahead first appeared on Central Western Daily.