The AFL wishes to advise Round Seven of the 2017 Toyota AFL Premiership Season has been designated Community Umpiring Week with the aim to encourage people to get involved in umpiring Australian Football at the grassroots level.

Umpires at each AFL match this weekend will be led on to the ground by four first-year community umpires, giving them a taste of the elite match day experience and demonstrating the opportunities that are available through umpiring.

AFL Umpires will also attend community umpire training sessions this week.

AFL National Umpiring Development Manager Adam Davis said with more than 1.4 million people playing Australian Football, umpire numbers have never been more important.

“Like coaches, trainers and administration staff, every game needs umpires,” Mr. Davis said.

“Community Umpiring Week supports all umpires throughout the community level who play an important role every weekend.

“Pleasingly we have seen a seven percent increase of umpire numbers and a two percent increase in retention rates over the past 12 months.

“Similar to the numbers of female participants, female umpire numbers are also rising with an increase of 18 percent.”

The AFL Umpires Development team have recently launched a new campaign ‘Australian Sports’ Best Kept Secret’ which encourages those who love the game to consider umpiring.

More information is available at . This site includes information on how to become an umpire along with resources to assist learning the role of the umpire.

OPSM is the Official Sponsor of the AFL Umpires, supporting community development and the umpire talent pathway at grassroots levels