WOMEN IN FOOTBALL – UMPIRES

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Steve McCarthy

This weekend’s Women’s Round of VAFA football extends to those women officiating in our game.

We’d just like to highlight four of our ladies in white; Leah Gallagher, Jayde Daly, Alex Anthony and Rebecca Brown (pictured left to right) all will play a major part this weekend.
Leah, a former A section grand final boundary umpire moved to the centre circle quite a few years ago and quickly made it as a field umpire in the top section. She now runs around in Premier C as an Assistant Development Coach and works to promote the younger umpires up the grades. 
Unfortunately Leah is sidelined with a foot injury at the moment which leaves her stranded on 495 VAFA games, but she’s still contributing in her coaching capacity. Leah is now observing passing on her vast array of experience to many others.
Jayde is a product of the MSJFL and after running the boundary has progressed up the ranks as a field umpire. 
She’s umpired as high as Premier “C” and hopes to make it back there soon. 
On Saturday morning at Visy Park in Carlton Jayde will umpire the Women’s High Performance Academy game for the AFL. 
This game features the top female players from all over Australia, so it’s a great highlight for Jayde. 
After that she’ll wander down to Royal Parade and umpire the Uni Blacks under 19s at Crawford Oval.
Alex has a followed a similar path to Jayde, and this former boundary umpire is umpiring under 19 Premier at the moment. 
After an injury set back early this year, Alex is hoping to get back to senior football soon. 
Alex is a quiet achiever with a great passion for umpiring and is looking forward to a big finals campaign and her big brother Damien is also one of our field umpires.
Rebecca (Bec) was a former player who decided to become a boundary umpire, but after a bad injury picked up the flags and hasn’t looked back. 
Now a regular in Premier and will be in action at Toorak Park on Saturday, Bec was the first female to umpire a VAFA representative match earlier this season.
Well done girls, we appreciate all you do.
Steve McCarthy is a VAFA Umpire Development Coach and his column with Cam Davidson can be read in the Amateur Footballer each week.