They are the number of clubs that participated in Australian Football in the year 2006.
They were recorded by the insurance company that had the contract to insure all affiliated Australian Football Clubs throughout the country.
Most, if not all of these required the public risk component of the policy with a number also taking out some form of limited insurance for their players. Some of the major country and regional clubs also insured their players for loss of wages through the scheme.
The document records that in that year, out of the 2,350 clubs in Australia, a total of 1,886 registered and insured with the company which provides a figure of 80%. What did the rest do? It is fair to say that the clubs were and are not required to go with the nominated company but it would be thought to be good practice to follow the lead of the AFL who initiated arrangements and settled for affordable rates with the company.
A state by state breakdown reveals that Tasmania had 98% of their clubs registered with the scheme while the state with the least number registered was Western Australia coming in at 44% of their total number of participating clubs.
The document also provides the number of teams throughout the country with a state by state breakdown. A possible further breakdown of the number of players is not stated.
These type of figures are significant because with the need to pay money to register it nullifies those sometimes rubbery figures of participating clubs which officials like to include in order to boost their numbers; and don’t for one minute think that Australian Football is the only sport which fudges their figures.
It was well known that at least one other football code used the opportunity to inflate their participation numbers by just adding a nought or two to the total number.
It has been suggested that Australian Football too has been guilty of this with officials sometimes more than willing to include a single school (one match or limited participation) Auskick group as a further feather in their cap.
At the end of the day these national figures are extremely important to secure federal government funding under various grant schemes and other state and national programmes which provide finance particularly for furthering junior and to some degree, senior physical activity plans.
Not only this but sponsorship also plays a big part in the number of participants in the code.
You can view the document here and it would be interesting to get an idea of the variance since 2006 on the number of participating teams in Australia.
Have they increased or declined? It could be argued that these figures our highly placed officials keep close to their chest.