Officiating and Conditions of Play
By Joan Brotherton
A special welcome back to bowls and as we are still negotiating our way through the various Covid-19 restrictions, I wish you all a very safe, enjoyable and healthy 2022. As we return, I am sure we will be involved in various competitions and social bowls as well as many officiating duties and I do wish you all the best in whatever you are involved in during 2022.
The most important issues that will come up in the near future will be:
• Conditions of Play
• Weather Conditions
• Duty of care to all officials and players.
Conditions of Play:
January saw the start of many events at State, district and club levels with all these events having various Conditions of Play to suit each event. That is why it is especially important that all officials and players read the conditions for each event they enter or are officiating. It is also a good idea to highlight various Conditions of Play that you feel that you need to be fully aware of. The main laws to read are as follows:
Section 5.2 – Game Regulations: (Page 91)
- Law 57: Regulations for play: (Page 91)
- Law 57.1 – Domestic Regulations: (Pages 91-93) with the following explaining the regulations that Member National Authorities can make to cover the following aspects of the sport:
- Laws 57.1.1 to 57.1.3
- Law 57.2 – Conditions of Play: (Page 93) with the following Laws explaining what controlling bodies must decide on what Conditions of Play are necessary to govern their competitions:
- Laws 57.2.1, 57.2.2 and 57.2.3
- Appendix A 1 – Conditions of Play: (Pages 95-96) with the following also explaining what the controlling bodies must decide on the Conditions of Play for an event before details of the event are publicised. The following conditions must be available to umpires and to entrants who ask for them and must be clearly displayed at all venues throughout the course of the event and must at least include the following: A.1.1, A.1.2, A.1.3 to A.1.3.10, A.1.4 to A.1.4.1.
Another critical issue that players, officials and spectators experience at this time of the year is the weather. Conditions can vary throughout our State and Australia, and it also becomes an issue for umpires and officials to consider their decision taking into account the Duty of Care to all players, officials and spectators.
It is an extremely hard decision, and one cannot please everyone, however players, officials and spectators safety is to remain the paramount consideration.
The full Bowls Queensland Extreme Weather Policy is on the Bowls Queensland website under the following: “About” – “Governance” – “Policies” and I recommend, as it is important, that all umpires, officials and clubs have a copy of the policy as it sets out the following:
- General Guidelines
- Hot Weather
- Wet/Cold Weather
- Sun Protection
Another particularly important reminder is that we all need to remain hydrated and drink plenty of water. Water has many important roles in the body and is required to maintain blood volume, regulate body temperature, and lubricates your joints.All clubs have water available at the bar or containers near the rinks so please look after yourselves during the various weather conditions.
Duty of Care to all Officials and Players:
This is also important and is a requirement that all umpires and officials read and sign the Officials’ Code of Ethics and Code of Behaviour when submitting their various application forms. Full details of these ethics can be found on pages 68 and 69 of the Officiating Manual for Marker, Measurer and National Umpire or a copy can be printed from the Bowls Queensland website under “Forms” – Umpire/Coach – The Officials’ Code of Behaviour and I also recommend that all umpires, officials and clubs have a copy of this document as it covers many aspects of our game.
I hope the above is of assistance to you during the months ahead and please remember if you wish to become a national marker, measurer, umpire or are due for reaccreditation, please contact your district umpire committee who will be pleased to assist you with all the information required to submit your application.