Andrew Forster has been playing football since he was a teenager but it wasn’t until recently that he decided to try refereeing.
“I decided to take up refereeing 3 seasons ago, after doing the Level 4 referee course again at Radford College with my daughter and son,” Forster said.
Running the line for ActewAGL Junior League and lower division Community League games on Saturdays, as well as the occasional Sunday at Over 45 Masters games, Andrew thought it would be a good way to keep fit and become a better player. But he soon discovered he was getting far more out of it.
“It was more about there not being enough referees and wanting to be able to help out. Some inspiration came from people like Clive Mackillop and the late Henk Thijjsens. I had my only inspection done by Henk and will always value his feedback,” he recalled.
“It helps me to understand the rule changes as well as keep fit. It also helps me to understand as a player what it is like to be a referee”.
A player, coach and referee, Andrew has found value in seeing all sides of the game and helping teams that would otherwise go without.
“I guess by playing you can see different referees making decisions, right or wrong, and see how to be a better referee. “
“On Sunday mornings at Over 45 Masters games you are always appreciated as they don’t always get a referee. I ran a line two seasons ago at the NPLW U13, U15 and U17 semi-finals with Wagga in all three games and the spectators appreciated the effort,” he said.
The Level 4 Referee Theory courses began in February, with Practical courses kicking off in April.
“I encourage anyone to give it a go. I have really enjoyed the training sessions and the friendly group of referees who are always willing to help,” he said.