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Recent News

Chris Stead 200 Senior Games!

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Last month we sat down with Chris Stead, who officiated in his 200th Senior Game. 

When and why did you start umpiring?
I started umpiring in 2004. I was a basketball referee and I had just failed the fitness tests for the State League competitions due to injury and I was looking for a way to increase my fitness for the next year. My brother had umpired for years and I thought I would join him for a season. I was originally only going to do juniors, but was umpiring U/18's by round 4 and seniors by round 10. By the end of the season, I enjoyed umpiring more so I quit basketball refereeing.

What is the best part of being an umpiring?
The best part of umpiring is the friends you make. Getting to select my panel last week with my best mates in the association was great. Getting paid to keep fit and having the best seat in the house to view the game is pretty awesome to.

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5 Myths about Umpiring

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Umpires don’t prepare for their game: FALSE

Riddell Umpires train each week, which includes running, skill work and coaching sessions. At these coaching sessions we look at different aspects of the game and address issues related to umpiring.   Umpires are appointed to games based on their skill level, just like teams are selected for Saturdays.

If you handball over your head, its automatically a throw: FALSE

This rule went out of the rulebook years ago. As long as it is a legal handball play on is the call. This is not the only rule that no longer exists. Others include:

-       Dropping the Ball

-       A trip by hand is a automatic report and 50m penalty 

-       An advantage call can be brought back if there is no advantage. 

The rulebook has changes every year. We recommend clubs keep up to date with changes. 

We are short of umpires: True

Although we generally have enough umpires in the RDFL, there is a general shortage across the country. The number of teams, particularly junior teams, is well outgrowing the number of new umpires. We can never have enough. More umpires will allow us to run more regular 3 umpire games in Senior Football, enforce training requirements more strictly and be able to deal with the drop off of junior umpires who leave the sport after a couple of years.  

The RDFL play by AFL rules: False

Yes we use the AFL rules to conduct games, however one of the opening statements in the rulebook is that the governing body can make changes as they see fit. The majority of the changes are administrative however some relate directly to on field decisions. Some of these include: 

-       Hands in the back. In the RDFL we have not implemented the AFL’s interpretation for this. A player cannot push or use two actions in a marking contest, however they can place their hands on the back of an opponent without penalty. 

-       Holding the Ball.  These are one of those rules where the interpretation changes based on skill level. So in under 10’s we hold off as long as possible before penalising a player however in seniors we are much quicker to make the call. Despite this we will never have the same interpretation as the AFL who are red hot. 

-       Deliberate out of bounds. Similar to above, skill level comes into play here. We will penalise a player who goes straight and direct for the line, however RDFL players sometimes miss kick and don’t have the same control as AFL players do so we are not as quick to ping them. 

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2017 AFL International Cup

This year's AFL International Cup will be played from 6 to 19 August and experienced umpire coaches/administrators Mark Volich and Glen Shilling have been appointed to oversee and manage the umpiring component for the International Cup.

They are seeking nominations from suitable qualified/accredited field, boundary and goal umpires for this fantastic experience. Field umpires must be currently Level 2 accredited whilst boundary and goal umpires must be Level 1 accredited as at 21 June 2017. They are also looking for umpire coaches who may be interested in doing some observing/providing feedback during the carnival, especially for the International Umpires who will be officiating.

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2017 AFL Victoria Metro Junior Championships

AFL Vic 

Congratulations to those umpires selected to represent us at the 2017 AFL Victoria Metro Junior Championships.Check our the appointments   http://bit.ly/2nPTaC8

 

 

Women in Umpiring

Well before females starting playing our great game, women have been umpiring AFL at all levels for many years. In fact community leagues have showcased female umpires for over 30 years. For a long time it was the only option for young girls to get involved in the game as there were issues around females playing AFL in junior competitions. Today women make up 15% of the Riddell umpiring group, with that number continually on the rise. 

Last weekend a milestone was reached, with 25 year old school teacher, Eleni Glouftsis, becoming the first female field umpire to officiate in a VFL/AFL game. After earning a three-year scholarship to train with the VFL and AFL in 2014, the South Australian has gradually and impressively worked her way up the ranks. She has been an 'AFL Pathway' umpire since the start of the 2016 season, which has allowed her to be an emergency umpire in matches over the past two seasons. The AFL currently has two female goal umpires, Chelsea Roffey and Rose O'Dea. Chelsea was the first female to officiate in a grand final.

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