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An umpire is an official in the sport of Australian rules football who adjudicates the game according to the "Laws Of The Game", the official handbook of Australian Rules Football.
Unlike many other codes of football, where the official is called a referee , in Australian rules football the officials are called umpires. Tom Wills, one of the founders of the Australian game, was the earliest known umpire of a football match in Australia.
At first the captains of both teams shared the duty of officiating games, however as the game became more professional in the 1880s, umpires became an important aspect of the game.
There are four different types of umpires and one type of steward in a typical game of Australian Football:
Since 1994, professional level Australian Football League matches are policed by three field umpires. Amateur, suburban and semi-professional matches can be policed by any number from one to three field umpires.
There are generally two goal umpires in each game at all levels, one at each end of the ground; occasionally, the use of two goal umpires at each end of the ground has been trialled. Goal umpires traditionally wore a white jacket, black trousers and a broad-brimmed hat, however caps and shirts have replaced the hats and jackets. The caps they wear are generally lime green or grey. They are the only umpires to wear a cap.
In the professional level Australian Football League, there are four boundary umpires in each match with two umpires sharing control of each side of the ground. At lower levels, there are typically only two or three boundary umpires.
At the professional level, and at other high levels of the game, all umpires and officials are provided by the league's umpiring department. At lower levels, it is common for the competing clubs to each provide one goal umpire and one boundary umpire to the match, but field umpires are still almost always provided by the league.
The game of Australian rules contains some "grey areas" where application of the laws is subject to interpretation, of degree or timing, making the job of field umpires extremely difficult. The instigation of new laws by the AFL in recent years, also contributes to the amount of work needed for umpires to maintain their skills and knowledge of the game. The umpires' director for the AFL is Jeff Gieschen, responsible for setting precedents for other affiliated leagues around the world.
Australian rules football umpires of all disciplines traditionally wore all-white uniforms. Goal umpires in particular wore a more formal attire of white jacket, white hat, tie and black slacks, as they were not required to actively run.
More recently, umpires have begun wearing uniforms of a distinctive colour to avoid a jersey clash with any of the competing teams. As of 2013, all AFL umpires wore lime green uniforms with grey shorts or trousers, which avoids a clash with any of the league's teams. Additionally, field umpires in the AFL are identifiable by a jersey number.
The most common historical pejorative term for an umpire, particularly a field umpire, was "white maggot", in reference to their historical white uniforms.Where white uniforms have been abandoned, "maggot" remains a common pejorative.
Australian rules football, officially known as Australian football, or simply called Aussie rules, football or footy, is a contact sport played between two teams of eighteen players on an oval field, often a modified cricket ground. Points are scored by kicking the oval ball between the middle goal posts or between a goal and behind post.
A referee or simply ref is the person of authority in a variety of sports who is responsible for presiding over the game from a neutral point of view and making on-the-fly decisions that enforce the rules of the sport, including sportsmanship decisions such as ejection. The official tasked with this job may be known, in addition to referee, by a variety of other titles as well, including official, umpire, judge, arbiter, arbitrator, linesman, commissaire, timekeeper, touch judge or Technical Official.
The referee is the person responsible for enforcing the Laws of the Game (LOTG) during an association football match. He or she is the final decision-making authority on all facts connected with play, and is the only official on the pitch with the authority to start and stop play and impose disciplinary action against players during a match. At most levels of play the referee is assisted by two assistant referees, who are empowered to advise the referee in certain situations such as the ball leaving play or infringements of the Laws of the Game occurring out of the view of the referee; however, the assistant referees' decisions are not binding and the referee has authority to overrule an assistant referee. At higher levels of play the referee may also be assisted by a fourth official who supervises the teams' technical areas and assists the referee with administrative tasks, and, at the very highest levels, additional assistant referees and/or video assistant referees.
International rules football is a team sport consisting of a hybrid of football codes, which was developed to facilitate international representative matches between Australian rules football players and Gaelic football players.
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In the Australian Football League (AFL), previously the Victorian Football League (VFL), the pre-season competition, known during its history by a variety of sponsored names and most recently as the NAB Cup, was an annual Australian rules football tournament held amongst clubs prior to the premiership season between 1988 and 2013. The pre-season competition culminated annually in a grand final and pre-season premier.
The 1912 Victorian Football League season was the 16th season of the elite Australian rules football competition.
The 1994 Australian Football League season was the 98th season of the elite Australian rules football competition and the 5th under the name 'Australian Football League', having switched from 'Victorian Football League' after 1989.
Jeff Gieschen is the former National Umpire Manager of the Australian Football League (AFL) and a former Australian rules football player and coach who played in the Victorian Football League (VFL) between 1974 and 1978 for the Footscray Football Club. He was the senior coach of AFL club Richmond from late 1997 until the end of the 1999 season.
The 1921 Victorian Football League season was the 25th season of the elite Australian rules football competition.
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Australian rules football culture is the cultural aspects surrounding the game of Australian rules football, particular to Australia and the areas where it is most popular. This article explores aspects and issues surrounding the game, as well as the players, and society. Australian Rules is a sport rich in tradition and Australian cultural references, especially surrounding the rituals of gameday for players, officials, and supporters.
The 1996 AFL Lightning Premiership was an Australian rules football knock-out competition, played in its entirety before the Australian Football League's main pre-season competition began. The Lightning Premiership was held for the only time in the modern era in 1996 - the Centenary Season of the AFL. It was a knock-out competition played from Friday, 9 February until Sunday, 11 February, with four games each evening at Waverley Park, each consisting of two 17.5 minute halves. The game trialled a number of highly experimental rules, including three points awarded both for deliberate rushed behinds and balls which hit the goalposts, and timekeepers not blowing the siren if scores were tied. However, the rule which altered play most significantly was the ball not being thrown in from the boundary line after travelling out of bounds, a free kick being awarded instead against the last team to touch the ball. Essendon won the title defeating Brisbane by 17 points in the Grand Final.
The 2018 AFL Grand Final was an Australian rules football game contested between the West Coast Eagles and the Collingwood Football Club at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on 29 September 2018. It was the 122nd annual grand final of the Australian Football League, staged to determine the premiers for the 2018 AFL season. The match, attended by 100,022 spectators, was won by West Coast by a margin of five points, marking the club's fourth premiership and first since 2006. West Coast's Luke Shuey won the Norm Smith Medal as the player judged best on ground. It is regarded as one of the greatest Grand Finals of all time; finishing 1st on the AFL's 50 greatest games of the last 50 years in 2020.
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