Younger umpires bring their game

THE quality of Port Lincoln Football League umpiring by younger umpires could be improved this weekend after they were put through their paces at two coaching sessions on Friday night and added to their experience by umpiring Mortlock Shield games.

South Australian National Football League (SANFL) country umpire officer Paul Cavanagh, who came down to run the sessions on Friday night, said he coached 15 boundary and 10 field umpires on positioning and reinforced umpiring fundamentals before the weekend.

Some of the main points Mr Cavanagh said he impressed upon the junior umpires was to look professional, to come out as a group to present a united force as a “team”, and to ensure throw-ins were of a high standard by positioning themselves on the oval according to their own ability. 

He said he had received a “good response” from people who watched the Mortlock Shield and Port Adelaide Cup games about the quality of the umpiring and the professionalism of the players.

Mr Cavanagh said umpiring taught many skills and brought positive aspects to the lives of those who participated in the activity.

He said it often helped young people make friends, have fun, feel part of a team, build confidence and fitness, and earn some money.

Port Lincoln Football League umpires coach Father Steve Ardill said it was good to have another voice over the weekend and for the junior umpires to receive instructions from another coach.

“He talked about the little things to do out on the ground to be the very best umpires we can,” he said.