HORSHAM United and Natimuk football and netball clubs are set to merge after the clubs' boards voted in favour of amalgamation.
The boards voted in favour of an in-principle agreement to become the Natimuk United Football Netball Club and to compete in the Horsham District Football League in 2014 and beyond.
AFL Victoria development manager Bruce Petering said this was a significant step in the process of bringing the two clubs together.
He said the clubs would continue to negotiate an agreement on the final structure, which would need to be ratified by the clubs' individual membership bases at a special general meeting on February 19.
Mr Petering said Horsham United president Peter Miller and Natimuk president Andrew Carine urged all members to vote in favor of the amalgamation.
He said all financial members would receive letters outlining the merger and a postal voting form they were encouraged to return ahead of the club membership meeting.
"Peter and Andrew - along with their respective boards - believe a merger is in the best interests of the individual clubs, and combined will create a new and exciting club, building on the individual strengths brought into the merger and forming a sound base to generate future prosperity of the new entity," he said.
Mr Petering said the Natimuk United Football Netball Club would be based at Natimuk, but would play some games at Horsham City Oval.
"Importantly the new entity will continue the long established history of playing an Anzac Day match at city oval," he said.
Mr Petering said if the merger was successful, the Wimmera Football League draw would be revamped to account for the reduction to an eight-team competition.
He said there would be no need for changes to the Horsham District league draw, except for the scheduling of an Anzac Day match.
"At this point in time a merger between the two clubs is a sensible way forward that will provide a sustainable future for the combined club," he said.
"It is now important that players and supporters of both clubs get behind the merger to ensure a strong and vibrant club emerges."