NSWSLFR Award Night - 2013
Congratulations to all the members who were nominated for awards this year and the winners were announced at the 2013 Awards Night Dinner held at the Marconi Club on Saturday 19th October, 2013. A fun time was had by all who attended at a well organised event having a good band, good singing duo and well known B – League Stars Sam Mac and Jules as the master of ceremonies ably backed by our own Sandro Perticarini.
Photographs of the event can be viewed under the drop down menu "Photo Gallery" and the ckicking on the sub menu "Awards Night - 2013" or click here.
Murray Wilson Honoured at Gala Dinner
The 2013 inaugural State Leagues Gala Dinner took centre stage at ANZ Stadium’s Millennium room on Friday 11th of October as players, coaches, officials as well as a number of high profile guests attended what was a fantastic evening acknowledging the achievements from the Womens State League, State League Mens One and State League Mens Two seasons.
Football NSW Referees Manager Kris Griffiths-Jones awarded Murray Wilson with the Referee of the Year award for his achievements this season.
NSW State League Football Referees Honoured
Two of our members were honoured at the inaugral NSW Premier League Gala Dinner with Katie-Louise Patterson being awarded the Women’s Premier League Referee of the Year award while Kurt Ams taking out the IGA NPL NSW Mens 1 Referee of the Year, both awards were presented by Kris Griffiths-Jones.
James Barnes set to referee his 2000th match on Saturday 30th March, 2013
In what has been described as one of the most amazing feats ever recorded at Football NSW, 60-year-old State League referee James Barnes will this Saturday evening officiate his two thousandth match in his 43rd consecutive year as a referee in the SUPA IGA NPL Mens 2 match between the Bankstown Berries v Sydney University at The Crest Oval.
“I am really looking forward to this Saturday’s match although it will be just another match, it will have a touch of significance attached to it". “I never thought when I first started way back in 1970 that I would ever hit 2000 matches but it’s happened". “I just love the game and it is my passion that drives me to get more enjoyment out of it.”
Having started his refereeing career in 1970 with the Canterbury Association, Barnes has kept to his vigorous fitness regime in staying in shape by running an incredible 60km per week amongst other things.
“I do run 60kms a week sometimes even more". “I have an intense program I follow where it can vary from an 8km run to speed work and distance running". “I also do athletics and I am a distance runner with my next competitive run penned in May for the Sydney half Marathon which is a 10km run". “Luckily I’ve stayed injury free and have really gotten to know my body well – that and a very good physiotherapist also.”
Asked what his secret to his success has been on continuing to officiate at a high level, Barnes replied.
“You need to be able to communicate with the players and coaches and show them respect as I believe it is reciprocated". “The other secret is really no secret but an obvious one, doing this keeps you fit and healthy". “Finally, remembering a Leo Wilson (who is deceased) euphemism “be there”.
With 43 years under his belt officiating at the highest level, Barnes stated that two memorable matches he refereed stood out in his illustrious career as a whistleblower.
“The 1984 NYL Grand Final between St George and Parramatta Melita at St George Stadium when Saints’ David Batten put the ball from a header over the bar by mere centimetres which would have made it 2-2 in the 88th minute but Parramatta won 2-1". “Finally, the State League Two Final between Hakoah and Roosters when two uncompromising teams went hammer and tong at it and the crowd appreciated the way I let the game flow with Hakoah running out victors 2-1.”
With a number of aspiring youngsters looking at donning the whistle and the black and white, or in some countries bright yellow or pink attire as a referee, Barnes had a few key messages for them.
“Be prepared for hard work and set yourself goals that are achievable". “Train well, keep fit and learn man management skills as the players really do appreciate this". “Go that extra metre and see what you can achieve from there.”
Mention retirement and you’ll hear it from Barnes who still believes he can officiate a couple more seasons.
“To be honest I think I can referee at least two more years, it depends on my fitness and when I feel it’s time to pack it all up.”
Barnes put forward that the chrome dome appearance of one Pierluigi Collina and Australian and ex-NSL referee Simon Micallef were the referees he looked up to from both a local and international front.
“Most definitely Pierluigi Collina as he had an amazing presence on the pitch and commanded it very well". “Locally Simon Micallef via his cool manner earned much respect from me.”
Whistle Blowing is tops for Nick Backo
A FUN hobby that helped Nick Backo earn a bit of money as a 14-year-old has turned into a major success taking him places he would never have gone as a player.
Backo, 24, of Parramatta, has been a referee for 11 seasons, starting out with Granville District Football Referees Association and working his way up to a place in the A-League this season.
He has been an assistant referee for two A-League matches, getting him closer to his goal of being the main referee on the field.
"It's definitely the best experience of my refereeing career so far," he said. "In particular the first one, walking out on an A-League game was a pretty special experience.
"I never would have been a player in an A-League game, but have been able to experience it first hand."
Backo said he made the choice between refereeing and playing after under-18s, when he realised he was a much better referee. He said it was a good way of earning money, staying fit and building confidence, plus it brings a lot of opportunities to participate in the sport to a higher level.
"There's a training course at the moment, and there'll probably be another in a month or so," he said.
"You are taught the laws of the game, watch some DVDs, get some information from the older guys, then do a laws of the game quiz.
"We're a large association so we've never got enough referees to cover 100 per cent of the games. There are opportunities for people of all ages to become a referee, and females can join as well."