Regardless of ability, playing with players of similar ability ensures more time on the ball, better development and enjoyment for everyone and is far more conducive to a happy team environment.


In respect to our junior teams, BHFC wants all our young players to develop strong and lasting friendships with all the players from their age group, regardless of which teams they progress through as they grow older.

Team Size
Team size is always a juggle between having enough players to cover injuries and absences and not too many players so to maximise each player's playing time. The other key factor influencing team size is the number of players registered in each age group. Team/Squad size varies slightly depending on the game format for that age group:

  • U6-7 play two games of 4v4 concurrently so have between 10-12 players per team

  • U8-9 play 7v7 so have between 8-10 players per team

  • U10-11 play 9v9 so have between 10-12 players per team

  • U12-16 play 11v11 so have between 13-16 players per team

  • U18+ play 11v11 so have between 13-30+ players per team/squad(Firsts & Reserves)


The MWFA will not register teams exceeding the maximum number without the Club ensuring that all the parents in the team understand that if the team exceeds the maximum their child’s playing time could be significantly reduced.
In order to ensure all players in teams in the U6 to U11 non-competitive age groups get reasonable playing time, MWFA recommends limits be placed on the number of players registered in a team.
MWFA recommended team sizes are as follows:

  • U6 and U7 Players on Field: 2X4  Minimum Team Size: 9 Maximum Team Size: 13

  • U8 and U9 Players on Field: 7 Minimum Team Size: 8 Maximum Team Size: 11

  • U10 and U11 Players on Field: 9 Minimum Team Size: 10   Maximum Team Size: 13

The recommended range strikes a balance between having enough players to allow for absences but not so many as to significantly impact playing time. The recommended maximum ensures that, on average, every player will play around three quarters of a game, every game. Additional players quickly reduce the on-field time of all the players.

Special circumstances may arise where the recommended team sizes will be exceeded; in these cases clubs should review the circumstances to ensure players are not being unfairly disadvantaged by getting less than the recommended amount of game time.

Grading Process for U9 and above

  1. Players attend one or two (depending on their age) grading sessions where they are assessed on certain criteria as compared with their peers by our experienced and impartial graders.

  2. The grading committee assess the attributes for each player and aim to form well-balanced teams based on a wide variety of criteria including individual skills, team skills plus mental and physical attributes 

  3. Also taken into consideration are detailed player assessments completed for each player by their coach from the previous season.

  4.  BHFC understands players can have a good or poor day at grading. It isn't the be-all and end-all of assessing players which is why factors such as form through the previous season and coaches reports are taken into consideration.

  5.  If required, some age groups may be called back for another grading session or certain players may be assessed at team training sessions.

  6.  Players will be informed by email of their team selection. Changes to team selection will only be made under exceptional circumstances.

  7.  It is imperative that all players attend mid-week training sessions, especially for those in the higher grades.

  8. If a player does not wish to be graded, he or she will automatically be placed into lower teams in the age group.

  9. Players requesting to play together will only do so if they are graded at the same level or in lower social teams.

  10. Parents are requested not to interfere with the grading process. Any concerns or queries should be addressed directly to the grading co-ordinators or age co-ordinators who will be in attendance on grading days. It's important that the players be allowed to enjoy the day, free from distraction and pressure from parents.

  11. BHFC will endeavour to ensure that no parent, relative or previous coach of a player will be involved in their grading session.

Grading process by age group


U6, U7 

The age co-ordinator will form teams based on any requests, school attended and the number of players registered. The club will decide on the number of players per team depending on the number of players registered. Returning players will only be able to change teams if there is a vacancy. 


BHFC wants to assure parents of U8 players that special care will be taken when assessing players and forming teams in our U8 age group. Playing with players of similar ability ensures more time on the ball and better development and enjoyment for everyone. U8s is a good stage to begin the transition to graded teams due to the change in team and field size. BHFC encourages all U8 players to be part of grading, regardless of ability and regardless of whether they actually want to be graded. It's an excellent introduction to the grading process and should serve as a fun day of football when they can get to know other players from their age group.


Friendships, school attended and number of players registered is still taken into consideration - as are detailed team reports completed by their coach from the previous season.



From U9 and up, BHFC grades all players into teams of equal ability. Grading will involve ball skills, 1v1 and small-sided games.



Selection in a team in the previous year does not automatically mean selection in the same team in the current season. It is especially important for new players to the club to attend grading sessions so they can be assessed against the current players.



The form of the grading process will be tailored to meet the circumstances of each age group, each season.

Grading Dates 2021


1st Grading Session

Under 8 

Date: 14th February

Time:  8.30-9.30am
Venue: Tristram Oval (mini-field)

Under 9

Date: 14th February

Time:  9.45-10.45am

Venue: Tristram Oval (mini-field)

Under 10

Date: 14th February

Time:  11.00am - 12.15pm

Venue: Tristram Oval (mini-field)

Under 11

Date: 14th February

Time:  11.00am - 12.15pm

Venue: Tristram Oval (mini-field)

Under 12

Date: 14th February

Time:  11.00am - 12.15pm

Venue: Tristram Oval (full-size field)

Under 13

Date: 14th February

Time:  11.00am - 12.15pm

Venue: Tristram Oval (full-size field)

Under 14

Date: 14th February

Time:  12.30-2.00pm
Venue: Tristram Oval (full-size field)

2nd Grading Session


Date: 21st February

Time:  8.30am for 8.45-9.15am
Venue: Tristram Oval


Date: 21st February

Time:  9.30am for 9.45-10.15am
Venue: Tristram Oval

W8 to W16s - GALA DAY

Date: 28th February

Time:  TBA

Venue: Tristram Oval