By Ant Wingard @AntWingard
Women’s football in Queensland will make history this weekend following the announcement of umpiring panels for finals in the community football competitions.
For the first time ever in the Sunshine State, an all-female panel will officiate a final in a Senior AFL Queensland competition.
The historic achievement for umpiring in the state was announced on Tuesday.
The all-female panel of six will take charge in the QWFA Division 1 Semi Final between Coorparoo and Aspley at Giffin Park, Coorparoo, on Saturday August 11.
Field Umpires Leona Jones and Janie McCullagh, Boundary Umpires Brittney Hornby and Belinda Maher and Goal Umpires Darcie Rehbein and Jemma King, will officiate the game following great seasons at the community level.
AFL Queensland Community Umpiring Development Manager, Nick Liparota, congratulated the group ahead of Saturday.
“It’s a massive credit to the ladies for their continual efforts throughout the season,” Liparota told aflq.com.au.
“Umpires have been running games since March and April and they have all shown they have the ability to officiate a game of finals football.”
“Saturday will be the first time we’ve had an all-female panel for a finals game, but I think we’ll see that number increase over the coming seasons.”
Through the finals, umpires are selection against several key criteria.
The AFL Queensland Umpiring Department and coaches assess each umpire’s performances throughout the season to grasp their capabilities of umpiring at a high level.
As well as possessing a thorough understanding of the rules and high fitness levels, umpires are also selected based upon their match management skills throughout the year, which must remain at the same level or higher.
The QWFA Division 1 game between Coorparoo and Aspley will commence at 4:45PM at Giffin Park this Saturday, August 11.
For any aspiring female umpires, please contact Nick Liparota at Nicholas.Liparota@afl.com.au.