Hung up the boots? Pick up a whistle!

Umpires are a fundamental part of our game at all levels, and with the 2022 community football season fast approaching, the time is now for new recruits to join the umpiring ranks.

AFL Tasmania and the state’s umpiring associations (NTFUA, TFUA, NWUA) are calling on retirees to come forward and stay involved in the game by picking up a whistle after hanging up the boots as part of a new campaign, launched today.

The ‘Refer a Retiree’ campaign urges members of the Tasmanian football community to get in touch with recently retired players and encourage them to stay involved in the game by joining their local umpiring association.

While the focus of the campaign is on former or retiring players, the push is also on for current players to consider umpiring whilst continuing playing.

The campaign is being launched with a new video focused on retired players continuing their football glory days by picking up a whistle after hanging up the boots.

AFL Tasmania Umpiring Manager Sam Bridges says:

“Umpiring is the best way to stay involved in footy after your playing days. It’s a great way to stay fit and socially connected, while also making a few dollars and giving back to the game.

“The glory days don’t have to end as a player, you can stay in the action and continue that same thrill by becoming an umpire.

“This campaign is targeted at recently retired players, as they often make for ideal umpires, given they have such a fresh understanding of and sense for the game.

“If you know a retiring player or someone recently out of the game, we are calling on you to encourage them to consider umpiring and get along for a training session. Now is the time to take up umpiring.

“People outside of umpiring generally don’t think about umpiring clubs as footy clubs, but that’s really what they are. They’re made up of experienced coaches, dedicated volunteers just like players, love the game, train during the week, have a laugh with their mates and perform on the weekend.

“I strongly encourage anyone with an interest in our great game – regardless of playing experience – to visit to connect with their local umpiring body. If you know someone who has hung up the boots, tap them on the shoulder and get them to pick up a whistle!”

Further umpire information can be found by contacting AFL Tasmania Pathways Manager Matt Phillips – 0418 476 987