EFL eligibility issue solved

Category: EFL - published 2012-05-31 by EFAF

Regarding the EFL quarterfinal game between the Graz Giants and the Calanda Broncos the EFL tournament director had to decide on appeals questioning the eligibility of eight participating players. Seven Calanda players and one Graz player who played for other clubs in the 2011 season were concerned.

All seven players of the game-winning Broncos however did not participate in any games for any other club during the 2012 season which could have made them ineligible to participate for the Calanda Broncos in EFL competition. Beyond that all of them were included in the original roster which the club filed before the March 31 deadline. Therefore all players will remain eligible for the remainder of EFL 2012 and the game's outcome will stand as played on the field.

EFAF regulations state that players transferring internationally need to apply for an „International Transfer Card (ITC)“. The goal is to prevent players from switching clubs too frequently making fraudulent use of the different season times throughout Europe. Due to the ITC system national federations are made aware of any player transferring into their leagues and may apply any specific national procedure handling player's transfers within a season. For EFAF club competitions only players are eligible who are explicitly named by the clubs by March 31 and did not play for any other European club since the start of the calendar year.

ITCs were applied for by the Calanda Broncos for all of the seven players in question before March 31. The club even precautionally applied for ITCs for the three players who played for an Austrian club temporarily participating in Swiss league play 2011 although those players held Swiss player's licenses for the 2011 season and possibly may not be deemed to have transferred internationally. The club is held responsible for minor infractions of the ITC regulations and will be fined for these, however neither the nature of the infractions is one of bad will nor could it have lead to the ineligiblity of players participating for only one single club in the current season.

As far as the Graz player is concerned there is indication he played for another club outside of Austria during the current season. This could have made him ineligible to participate, however his eligibility explicitly was granted prior to the game. The player was named on the original Giants EFL roster and the club may have been unaware of him playing elsewhere between the Austrian 2011 and 2012 season. Still it is any club's responsibilty to ensure ITCs are issued for any international transfer of one of its players. The negligence of that responsibility on behalf of the Graz Giants in two cases (upon the player leaving and later rejoining the team) left no other choice than to penalize the club. The amount of the fine was fixed slightly above twice the fee of an ITC which the club would have had to pay if it had abided by the regulations.

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