Young ref wins top posting
IT is not easy being the man in the middle - but Jared Seiffert is certainly doing a great job.
The 20-year-old has been selected to referee at the Football Federation Australia Boys National Youth Championship.
It is the latest accolade for the Clunes official, who has risen through the Football FNC refereeing ranks in recent seasons.
Seiffert said he was delighted with his appointment, which could lead to further national selection if he can impress watching assessors.
"It is an honour," he said.
"In some ways it is quite scary. We are going to be assessed and there will be a lot of people watching.
"It is a great opportunity though. I cannot wait."
A former keen player, Seiffert has developed his refereeing career after picking up the whistle about seven years ago.
He has overseen the region's junior, female and senior men's matches while honing his craft.
This season has been Seiffert's first refereeing the FFNC men's premier division.
"You are watching the best footballers in the area," he said. "It's the best seat in the house as well.
"It is a privilege to be out there.
"I try and stay out of the action and build relationships with players. If you do that, everyone respects you."
Top young players from across the country will be in action at the coming championship, which is taking place in Coffs Harbour.
Seiffert will also be invited to officiate high-level matches in Newcastle as part of a Northern New South Wales Football scheme to help mentor and support talented referees.
He said being a referee had helped him grow on a personal level..
"I think it has taught me to work harder," he said.
"You have got to be really open-minded as a ref.
"It gives you good discipline as well.
"I have really enjoyed it."
Jarred Seiffert's top tips for budding referees:
1. Ask other referees questions - use their experience.
2. Stick with it - it is hard work at first but ultimately rewarding.
3. Be prepared to work hard.
4. Enjoy it - it's a good role.