Certificate eases ref shortage
It’s never too late to further your education in sport and that’s exactly the case for veteran soccer referee Ron van de Molen.
He’s recently completed a soccer refereeing qualification to not only boost his skills in the sport, but also answer a call for more people to become qualified referees.
A volunteer soccer referee of 10 years, van de Molen has recently gained his grade one referee certificate, entitling him to control college and club football.
His qualification is also a huge boost for Waikato and Bay of Plenty regional soccer, as there is a critical shortage of qualified referees.
Matamata Swifts media manager Dwayne Barlow says a gradual but steady decline in the number of referees could soon become a crisis for local football.
Many senior and youth games could be without qualified match officials.
‘‘The WaiBOP Football Federation is aware of this problem and is starting to address it through the Club Based Referee (CBR) programme, where club members can take part in a basic course which provides them the knowledge to referee local level football.
‘‘Also, all clubs are required to have a CBR on hand for all senior men’s and women’s games and all youth games,’’ says Barlow.
Although van de Molen didn’t start playing until after high school, he has moved from player, to sideline supporter, coach and now qualified referee. He’s mainly refereeing Matamata College teams and the Challenge Matamata Swifts Ladies.
Van de Molen says working as a volunteer referee keeps him fit and involved in a sport he loves.
‘‘You have to be fairly affirmative in your dealings with people. You try to be as friendly as you can with them, but there’s a bottom line where what you say goes. If you have that expectation and show that, then there is very little argument on the field.’’
Van de Molen has plans to gain further refereeing qualifications. He says increasing his qualifications should mean improving his performance on the field. and that’s something he is always keen to do’.
Ron van de Molen gained a refereeing qualification, easing a regional shortage of qualified soccer referees.