Well it is and it isn’t.
All I want is for ‘good’ rugby to be played, everyone enjoys it and no one gets hurt. If that happens and nobody notices I’m there bingo!
Easy? 80% of the time, yes. Those are your ‘regular’ decisions. You have good view and are sure what went on by whom, where and how.
It’s the other 20% that make the difference. Your view is blocked. You’ve followed the ball and there has been an almighty collision off it, there’s been contact but enough to stop the play?
Average game you make between 250-300 calls/decisions. So 45-55 times you make, more or less instantly, a tough decision. You are not going to get them all correct.
So here’s the secret…Do Your Best. Not earth shattering I know, but it works for me.
Be honest with the players, and yourself and call what you see. If you get questioned reply with honesty and reflect on what is said. Just because you have the whistle doesn’t make you infallible. I know I’ve made some howlers in my time!
So accepting that true proficiency takes 10,000 hours I consider myself to be in training for the next 14,785 games. Along the way I hope to enjoy the company of great people, be bought the odd beer and to enjoy the game. Lets face it I could be at home watching EastEnders!
By Paul Cunningham – Tag Rugby Referee
LEARN TO SIDE STEP
As you approach the tackler , decide which direction you are aiming to run past them.
Shorten your stride to get your timing and balancing right. Step wide with your outside leg, placing your body weight onto that leg as if you are set to change direction that way. Some players slow down slightly to lull the defender.
RARC: Hi Julia, thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to take this interview.
RARC: What does it take get to your exceptional level on the rugby pitch, especially having got tag player of the league last year?
JS: I try and learn from others. The external coaches have helped as have the internal ones like Russ and Jason and I play as often as possible and think about better ways to play and work on all my weak points.
RARC: How did you start playing with the club?
JS: Errol persuaded me to come to the first blitz event, it was fun so I started coming on Sundays.
RARC: What is the best thing for you about the club?
JS: The game I think, really enjoy the sport, it’s simple but you need to play smart to do the things which allow the team to score a try. I like when many people want to try and get better with the club and come along just to play, everybody is welcoming.
RARC: If you were scouting for talent, who is the first person you’d pick?
JS: Hmm, Gordon, Russ, Dan, Annie, Charles (okay better stop now)
RARC: You are what looks like a very career driven entrepreneur, how do you plan(make time) to be as active as you are with the RARC?
JS: When it comes to playing I put it first. I know league nights and Sunday mornings I am busy and other stuff fits around it. There are plenty of other nights in the week.
RARC: If you had to start all over again, what career would you choose totally different to the one you are presently in now?
JS: Actually I like construction. Other choices would be politics or the UN.
RARC: Where do you see this club going down the road & will members just look as this as a fad, and stop playing one day ..?
JS: Everyone will stop playing one day as they move away, grow older, have kids, etc etc. But I think there is enough passion in the club that it will carry on for years to come. The challenge is to keep growing it, to keep doing fun stuff (the blitz, the adventure day outs like Twickenham) and to keep improving our skills.
RARC: What do you want to see the club achieve in the next couple of years?
JS: A regular professional coach (once a month for example). Our teams to go up in the league, to reach more women and beginners and to have regular “Adventure Day Outs”.
RARC: If you could encourage a colleague to play or join the club, what words of inspiration would you use in one sentence??
JS: Its great fun and it’s great for keeping fit, also if you can run and/or coach, you can play.
RARC: What do you think about playing in the league?
JS: Great fun, gives us something to focus on and we’ve met some great other players who we’ve become friends with.
RARC: Do you read our monthly newsletter?
JS: Yes, and I luv it!!!!
RARC: Would you recommend the club and the sport to other people?
JS: Yes whole heartedly.
Thanks once again Julia Stone. See you on the pitch!