Rugby Coaching Blog | Professional Rugby Advice & Coaching


Refereeing is a thankless task, despite the thanks by David Clarke
October 6, 2009, 8:49 am
Filed under: Dan Cottrell, Rugby Refereeing | Tags: , ,

rugby referee l plate

I don’t referee every week. Perhaps every couple of weeks plus some practice games.

Normally it is my son’s team, who are Under 10s, and the other week, a Welsh Women’s training game.

Every referee in rugby gets thanked after the game. Perhaps through gritted teeth, but at least there is some thanks. Wayne Barnes, one of the RFUs international referees, told me that it is good to discuss the game afterwards in a friendly manner over a beer. It is a sort of soothing process because not everyone agrees with your decisions.

I am not battle hardened as a referee. I am sensitive to my mistakes. However 16+ years of refereeing kids’ rugby (plus basketball, football, netball and hockey) have taught me to remain fair, not try to even up decisions and referee what YOU see, not what others tell you.

The two other Under 10s coaches for my team and I are bias. The trouble is we are bias to the other teams. I suppose it is because we are either teachers, or an ex teacher in my case.

And that’s why it is a thankless task. Because during the game we don’t try to give our team any quarter, and perhaps are a little less stringent on the opposition. So when a mindless parent or over excited coach shouts something about our decisions, it is very frustrating. No amount of “thanks” at the end can prevent the heart racing a little when you hear dissention from the sidelines.

Here is a great video from the FA to watch on the matter.

Better Rugby Coaching

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