Referees News 2013
Photo: The 3 of us, action shot ippon!!
In attendance Dale Gamble, Brian Noble from BIKO and Billy Brennan EKKA
Travel arrangements were changed by the airlines... so Brian and Billy arrived some 4 hours in advance of me, having checked into the hotel we went to the head quarters hotel where we met up with the English and British contingent and our European friends Kjell Jacobson from Norway and Michael Hogan from Ireland, who we dinned with over the next 5 days. At this year's Referees' briefing the coaches were also in attendance, the first time this has happened at world level.. [something we have been doing in England on Referees courses for a long time]. I was amazed of how many officials there was... over 250, with 40 being allocated over 6 tatamis.. I was on No.1 with Brian and Billy on 3 and 4 respectfully. We learned on the night that the age restriction for referees had been lifted.. so no forced retirement at 60yrs.
Quite a busy day for the 3 of us, despite the amount of officials per area, [if you were a Judge B or A, you perhaps only got a couple of bouts all day], so felt quite relieved that I was being used. News came through that Amiee Sell had won a bronze medal... well done!! Billy was also chosen for a Kata final and eventually got onto the area after a very long opening ceremony.
The group of officials [kumite] were split into 2 groups... 12 to 3pm, 3 to 5.30pm... It seemed very strange turning up at 3pm, ready for my 1st bout of the day. 2 and half hours!! .. normally used to a 12 hr shift - but must have suited me as I was proposed for a final and later picked. This was my 1st world final with only qualifying to Referee "A" last year. So after the razzmatazz, the build up etc., I was ready to go!! Feeling a little nervous on the inside, I managed to still keep looking cool and debonair on the out side.[lol] hoping nothing goes wrong... It went like a dream.. 3 ippons over in a minute.. 9-0.
Photo: relaxing before the final
Again all 3 of us busy.. [with plenty of cat. 2"s ] with it being the cadet day!!
Photo: Billy in concentration
Last competition day and referees de-briefing... which to mine and Billy"s surprise we were awarded our long service pins to the WKF referees dept from World Chief Referee Roland Lowinger... 10yrs bronze for me and 15yrs silver for Billy. With a few announcement of changes to the rules which will be introduced next year [details which will be discussed at EKF referees courses], it was all over for another year Day 6 travel home!!
Photo: Dale receiving 10 year pin, Billy receiving 15 year pin
Dale Gamble EKF Chief Referee