Umpires Corner - Edition 1

Welcome to the 1st edition of Umpires Corner. It may be the off season but there are plenty of things happening around the place. Recently the coaches group and committee met to discuss the 2014 season and beyond. Highlights included 100% attendance and two of our younger brigade in Ti-Arne Hickey and Harley Darmanin presenting to the group. You can look forward to our new website, different training and times, an exciting fitness camp and range of new initiatives to take Riddell Umpires into the future.

At AFL level, Jason Venkataya is now the only AFL umpire to hail from the great Riddell Umpires after the retirement of our greatest success story, Justin Bennison. At state level, Jordan Andrews umpired the TAC cup Grand Final on the boundary and Donna Brown umpired the reserves grand final in the WAFL.

At the end of 2013, Bill Connell was awarded life membership and Lita Cooney was awarded her 2nd Bob Croxford Best Club Person award. Steady, AOK and Matty Cusack were umpires of the year and Ti-Arne (chicken wing) Hickey was female umpire of the year. All 3 senior Grand Finals were decided by single digits and it was a great day for all involved that were able to witness the day until the end. MOK was awarded metropolitan coach of the year and has no doubt put a higher price on his head. Cam time to get the cheque book out.

Now for the interesting going on’s of the off season. A few of our umpires have been having big off seasons. None bigger than our man Dash Chahine. Dash is smashing out km's like he is an AFL veteran. Getting some very decent times too. Joel Page seems to be following in Dash’s footsteps with some decent Run Keeper times as well. That’s when he isn’t posing for photos with blokes from Melbourne Heart. Billy has been sending people's luggage to Hong Kong instead of Sydney in his new role as a bag drop bitch at Melbourne Airport. Ronnie is probably asleep somewhere, however he may have to hand over the pillow as we hear someone may have taken over as the number 1 sleeper in the group. Rumour has it that Woody went a little hard at the post season trip and didn't make it out of bed for 3 days after the 1st night. We are just hoping that Woody doesn’t sleep his way through the whole off season. It’s rumoured that Rathy is seeking help for his phobias, his main one is a combination of Vestiphobia and Xanthophobia. We wish Tim all the best. Cam Black seems to be enjoying his new favourite TV show, Peppa Pig. Harley Darmanin has started a km a day challenge. Great to see him having a crack. POCLA is sporting the good old walrus photo on facebook, let’s hope alcohol was involved otherwise he has some explaining to do. While on profile pics, AOK is still holding that umpire of the year trophy. Time to put it down champ, 2014 is almost here. While talking about 2014, the recruiting of females is high on the agenda. A certain facebook photo shows that we may have one more female on our list, hang on, no we don’t, it’s just Jesse Wilkie in a dress. Well player Sir, or should I say Madam.

Umpiring helps build many qualities in a person, one of them being courage. When Ti-Arne posted the following facebook status I could only help to think that the Riddell Umpires helped her get through it “the courage it takes to stare at the toaster waiting for the toast to pop #intenseshit". Sometimes you can get very frustrated being an umpire. The cold weather and abuse from players and spectators can sometimes become too much. A good umpire can deal with these frustrations to remain 100% focused. After the following facebook status, i’m not 100% sure Dodge is cut out to be an umpire “Bloody candy crush, have to wait half a friggin hour till get my next life. Stupid bloody game!”. Hopefully these 2 umpires are ready and raring to go in 2014

If anyone else has any off season news that they feel warrants being included in edition 2 in early 2014, feel free to drop an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . –ORANGEUMP-