The South Metro Junior Football League hosted the 2023 Umpiring Presentation Day on Sunday 8th October at the Kingston Town Hall and were joined by special guests Michael Beresford from OpenCorp, Peter Bailes – AFL Field Umpire (former SMJFL Field Umpire), Josh Furman – AFL Boundary Umpire, and Ray Chamberlain – AFL Field Umpire.
In 2023, the SMJFL had over 700 registered Umpires including 116 female Umpires which was a 75% increase from 2022. There were 52 Grand Finals played in 2023 which saw 110 field umpires, 109 boundary umpires and 104 goal umpires appointed to Grand finals with 208 individual Umpires being appointed to Grand Finals. SMJFL Head of Umpiring Doug Haworth said on the day “numbers like this cannot be achieved without the enormous efforts put in by everyone in this room so I think you all deserve a great round of applause”.
This year we had 9 former SMJFL Umpires promoted to the State League Development Squad with these Umpires officiating in the Coates Talent League Boys and Girls games, VFLW, and the U16’s & U17’s National Championships. These numbers are a true reflection of the Umpiring pathway the SMJFL is creating and wouldn’t be possible without the support of our Umpire Academy Major Sponsor OpenCorp.
Doug congratulated all award winners on the day and added that our “Umpires are an integral part our game and even more so at community level as this is where the future of the sport is created. Never discount how difficult of a challenge it is to be an Umpire and always back yourself in with every decision you make”.
2023 Award Winners
Field Umpire Training Award – Whitehouse/Donlon Group – Archie O’Sullivan
Field Umpire Training Award – Beer/Marrow Group – Mark Tchernych
Mohammad Bangash Memorial Training Award – Maddy Jansz
Field Umpire Training Award – Carney/Menara Group – Finn Butterly
Boundary Umpire Training Award – Lea/Bahr Group – Lucas Kennedy
Boundary Umpire Training Award – Lea/Grcic Group – Jed Reimers
Most Improved Boundary Umpire – Elizabeth Shady
Most Improved Field Umpire – Ben Easton
VAFA Umpire Pathway Award – Lachlan Perrett
SFNL Umpire Pathway Award – Noah Dyer
Robinson-Walsh Trophy – OpenCorp Female Encouragement Award – Ellen Block
Family Recognition Award – Perrett Family
Best First Year Boundary Award – Zane White
Eddie Griffin Award – Best First Year Umpire 2023 – Jack Davis
Bronze Whistle Award – Finn McClean