Umpiring USM-Penang International Netball Tournament 2014

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Once upon a time… 3 years ago (I think), I was part of a team competing in this tournament. This year, I was part of the team umpiring in this tournament.

Once upon a time… 3 years ago (I think), I was one of the players who, aside from throwing balls around the field, also threw around expletives to the umpires.

What?? They suck! Big time! Hehehehehe… Well, most of them, anyway.

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This year, however, I was at the receiving end of the expletives, although, thankfully, not as much as some of the other umpires. It was a completely different experience, and quite an unpleasant one, I must say. Irritating too. But then, players being players, and this is talking from experience, they always thought they were correct with regard to the penalties e.g. contact, obstruction and so on. While sometimes they were undeniably right, sometimes they were also not.

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The thing with men’s netball is, the game is really really fast. And it is especially more challenging when it comes to the shooting area, where it becomes really physical. Almost all of the less-experienced umpires, including myself, find it really difficult to catch all the errors the players made.

And, of course, the players weren’t really helping with all the “Come on, ref!”, “Are you blind?”, “Contact!” and some other less pleasant remarks. Which is why we try to avoid umpiring the men’s games. Hehehehe…

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It was a last minute invitation by one senior umpire to be part of the umpires for the tournament this year and since I didn’t really have anything planned for the weekend (except for the inter-insurance bowling tournament), I thought, what the heck. I could do with the extra cash too. Hehehehe…

It has been a long time since I last touched the whistle (not counting the LSUS Segambut the Saturday before) and umpiring for the open games, particularly the men’s games. Phew! My heart was pounding real hard and there were butterflies in my stomach. Damn nervous! But all in all, it was a good experience. Even with the hot and wet weather.

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usm-netball-2014-1Will I do this again next year? Hmmmm… well, I have one year to think about it. Hehehehehe…

To the players, on behalf of the umpires for the tournament, I would like to apologise for all the unsatisfactory umpiring we did. Play clean, next time, so that our job would be easier. Hehehehe… Before you say anything further, maybe some of you should try being at the other end of the whistle for once. Peace! victory

Wanna say something cheeky? ;)