Sunday 26 September 2010

The Rugby Ref's changing room, No 6.

Sunday afternoon.  2nd XV Cup.  Nice little club, running on a small budget, but they still have a referee's room.  The clubhouse is shared with a cricket club, which explains why the referee's room is full of white umpire's coats, wickets and bails.  The room is small, has its own shower, but no toilet.  The Rugby Referee gives this changing room 6 out of 10.

The Rugby Ref's changing room, No 5.

Saturday afternoon, Junior Vase Cup, at a nice friendly club out in the country.  The clubhouse seems fairly new and well maintained, but there is no referee's changing room facilities.  The Rugby Ref had to use the 2nd XV changing room, which was also being used by the physio, so a short wait for them to finish before The Rugby Ref could get changed.  The Rugby Ref was also told it was lucky the 2nd XV game (also at home) had been cancelled or they really wouldn't have known where to put me!  After the game The Rugby Ref had to share the players showers and again negotiate with the physio over sharing the changing room.  Having said all that the friendliness and hospitality displayed by the home club was second to none and The Rugby Ref always enjoy going there.  However the score is for the changing room only and The Rugby Ref has to give this one 3 out of 10.

Sunday 19 September 2010

Rugby needs ref's - it could be YOU!

The game of Rugby always needs more referees, have "YOU" ever thought of becoming one yourself? 

Maybe your playing days are nearing the end, but you still want to stay involved in the game? 
Maybe you want to put something back into the game?
Maybe your kids have started playing and you want to be involved with them?
Maybe you aspire to reach the top in rugby refereeing?

Whatever the reason, rugby needs you, so how do you start?

Refereeing Mini-Midi Course
This course will equip you with the basic knowledge required to referee at mini-midi level.  This covers age groups under 7 through to under 12 (the continuum).  It's a great way to get involved if your children are playing in these age groups.
For details of the RFU "Refereeing Mini-Midi Course" (new for September 2010), contact the "Club Coaching Contact" at your local club, contact your local Referee Society, or follow THIS LINK.

Entry Level Referee Award. (ELRA)
This award offers an outstanding introduction to refereeing rugby union (is there any other kind?), and will equip you with the skills and confidence to do so.  This award is recognised by the RFU as a formal refereeing qualification.
For details of the RFU "Entry Level Referee Award" contact the "Club Referee Contact" at your local club, contact your local Referee Society, or follow THIS LINK.

For more advice on how to start refereeing or choosing an appropriate course, you can contact a member of the RFU referee development team, by following THIS LINK.

The Rugby Ref started off helping the coach for his son's team, at his local club.  The club then offered to pay for anyone who wanted to referee, provided they helped the club out at the appropriate age level.  The Rugby Ref volunteered and did an ELRA course (this was before the Mini-Midi course was introduced).  He then refereed his son's team before joining his local referee society and progressing to adult games.  The Rugby Ref likes doing courses and collecting qualifications.  The Rugby ref is now a qualified Society Touch Judge, a qualified Referee Coach and an RFU Referee Trainer.

For more information on getting involved in refereeing you can go to THIS PAGE on the RFU website, and watch the excellent "Get Involved In Refereeing" video.

You can also look at this booklet "Becoming an RFU Referee".

Tuesday 14 September 2010

The Rugby Ref's changing room, No 4.

Tonight The Rugby Ref had an Under 16, county schools selection game.  The game was fantastic fun for both The Rugby Ref and the players.  Played in good spirit with little to no foul play.  The changing room was the best The Rugby Ref has been in, even better than a Championship changing room The Rugby Ref has used.  Large, clean, with it's own shower and toilet cubicle.  There is a mirror and a sink, the showers were hot and the room is secure.  The Rugby Ref gives this changing room 10 out of 10 as he cannot see any way of improving it.  This is the benchmark by which all changing rooms will be judged.

Wednesday 8 September 2010

Running at the ref..........a new trend?

So The Rugby Ref had a pre-season selection game last weekend.  Four 20 minute quarters and an interesting incident that The Rugby Ref wants to tell you about.

Third quarter of the game, we are in broken play.  Black have the ball on the right side of the field when there is a turnover ball.  A Red opposition player ends up with the ball about 15 feet in front of The Rugby Ref at his 2 o'clock position. Play is fragmented with no discernible lines.

The Red player starts running straight toward The Rugby Ref, who looks right and left quickly, there are no players within 10 feet of him on either side.  As the player gets closer, he looks straight at The Rugby Ref.  The Rugby Ref is in no doubt that the player knows exactly where The Rugby Ref is standing.  The Rugby Ref takes a couple of paces to his left and sees the player adjust his run to keep heading straight at The Rugby Ref.  The Rugby Ref takes another look around, no one either side of him, but there may be a player behind him?  At this point the red player runs straight into The Rugby Ref, who twists side on and shrugs off the contact.

Peep! blows The Rugby Ref, "Penalty to Black".

"What for"? exclaims the red player.
"You deliberately ran into me" says The Rugby Ref.
"You were in my way" replies the red player.
"There was room all round me, but you chose to run straight at me", says The Rugby Ref, "penalty to black".
There ended the conversation.

The Rugby Ref has spoken to other referees about this incident and it seems to be an increasing trend for players to use the referee as a shield between themselves and any opposition players.  This is a trend that The Rugby Ref is determined to stamp out.  From these other referees' comments it would seem that other referee's are of the same opinion.

"I had a few players run into me, or toward me this weekend ... is it a trend to use the ref as a shield"?

"Good for you. Too many players are using this as a deliberate tactic and have been in recent years".

"He saw you / was looking at you and adjusted when you moved... on that basis it was deliberate contact".

"In my opinion, from your description, he was using you to "snooker" the opponent behind you, keeping you between him and the opponent".

"Maybe he had been watching the tri-nations and thought to himself, I'll have a piece of that knocking the ref over action".

They all said "card him"! 

Maybe The Rugby Ref is getting too lenient?

Monday 6 September 2010

The Rugby Ref's changing room, No 3.

This weekends changing room was at a club with a fairly new clubhouse, which they largely built themselves!  This is a good size changing room with its own toilet, shower, sink and a mirror.  It's private and the shower is hot and powerful.  The only downside is that the floor is bare concrete and the walls are painted breeze block.  The Rugby Ref knows from experience that because of this the room gets very cold in the winter.  Despite that The Rugby Ref likes this changing room and gives it 8 out of 10.