Netball Umpiring – ‘Back To Basics’

Netball Area
Umpire the half of the court to your right and the sideline Technically an umpire should not blow for infringements in the other umpires half but an umpire may be required to do a toss up in the other umpire’s half. As an umpire, remain slightly ahead of play and watch the whole game not just the ball.
Umpire A

netball rules

A short, sharp confident whistle blow to signal:
• Start of game,
• Start of each quarter,
• End of game,
• End of each quarter,
• Restart the game,
• When an infringement occurs,
• Goal scored.

If you blow the whistle for a goal in your half, you are the umpire who blows for the next centre.

Before the game
Check Nails, Jewellery, Coin Toss/ Paper, Rock, Scissors to determine which team wins the first centre pass.

The other team then decides the direction they wish to shoot. Alternatively, the winner of the toss can pass over the centre pass and choose the direction of play instead.

Controlling the centre pass – Question Sheet:

1. Which umpire starts the game?
A: The umpire who is controlling the attacking end of the team who won the centre pass!

2. Which umpire starts the game after a goal is scored?
A: The umpire who blew the whistle for the goal, blows for the next centre pass.

3. How do you know whose centre pass it is?
A: The centre pass alternates between the teams (it is irrelevant who scored the last goal).
Use a hair band on the hand for the direction of the centre. Don’t change at half time because teams change ends.
Don’t play with it at half time!!

4. Which umpire indicates for the next centre pass after a goal?
A: Both umpire’s indicate for the next centre pass.

5. At the start of each quarter – how do you know whose centre pass it is?
A: It is whose centre pass it would have been next from the qtr before (Don’t change hair tie (or similar) at end of the qtr because teams change ends – unless a goal was scored just before the end of the qtr & the centre pass was not taken!)

6. When do you blow for the centre pass?
A: As soon as the centre steps into the centre circle.

7. Can you blow the whistle for an infringement that the other umpire may have missed?
A: No, technically not. Unless you are new and have asked the other umpire to support you.

8. If the Centre makes an infringement eg. Footwork – who is responsible?
A: The umpire who blew for the centre pass is responsible if the centre makes an infringement during the centre pass.

9. Does the Centre have to have 2 feet in the centre circle?
A: Yes

10. Can a player jump from the goal third and land with the ball in the centre third?
A: Yes.

Extra details for the start of the game
Centre must be wholly in the circle to start.

Off-side – blow whistle for centre, then blow for infringement. Take the ball to where the infringement occurred.

From Centre, the ball must be caught in centre third.

Details during play
Umpire should stay outside the court except for toss up, umpire cannot coach.

If ball hits umpire – play on unless 1 team penalised – free pass awarded.

Umpire should go to the back line to view play around the goal.

If the ball goes off court and you didn’t see who the ball came off, you can call a toss up.

Take the ball back.
If GA and GD break and GA touches the ball, do a toss up.
If one person breaks, take the ball to infringement area and award a free pass.

Free Pass – called when the infringement does not involve a player from the opposing team. Footwork, off-side, playing the ball, throw in, short pass, over a third.

The offending player does not need to stand out of play.

Any player may take the pass that is allowed in the area where the free pass is awarded.

Penalty Pass or Shot – called when an infringement that interferes with a player from the opposing team. Contact & obstruction

When a penalty pass or shot is awarded – offending player must stand out of play.

Any player that is allowed in the area where the penalty is awarded may take the penalty. It must be taken where infringement occurred unless it places the non offending team at a disadvantage.

The offending player may not participate in the game – physically or verbally!

Playing Advantage
Refrain from blowing whistle to penalise an infringement when the non-offending team will be placed at a disadvantage. Call ‘advantage’ to indicate it has been observed but not penalised.
If blown – must take penalty unless a goal is scored by non-offending team.
Advantage used for goals, obstruction and contact.

Toss Up
Simultaneous contact, off-side, ball out of court, possession, umpire not sure who it came off last, after accident – not sure who last had the ball.

Taken where it occurred – by players concerned unless both players do not share common area.
Face goal end, arms straight, hands by their sides, feet in any position, 3 feet apart – nearer feet
Release ball – midway between 2 players – from just below the shoulder level of the shorter player’s normal standing position.
Flick vertical – not more than 2 feet.
Quick release… don’t leave players hanging on.

Stop Play – to restart the umpire may say “WA ball, continue play on my whistle”

Player can only come on after a goal has been scored and before the centre pass has been take or at any break ie. Quarter time.
¼ or ½ time for any changes.

5 C’s
• Common sense
• Consistency
• Communication
• Control
• Confidence

REMEMBER: Blow your whistle with confidence. Be clear in what you say and stand by your decisions!!