Tsara Affarian has been playing netball with Galston for 6 seasons and has umpired for the last 2 years. This year she was awarded the club’s Simpson Perpetual Trophy for outstanding umpiring commitment. She shares some of her passion for the game.

“Teamwork, making new friends and having a go is what has pushed me to keep playing netball over the past five years. This is also what inspired me to start umpiring last year. Seven years ago, when I was in year three, I was watching some older kids in my school play netball. They looked like they were having so much fun and so something inside my little head decided, that this was the sport for me. Since then I have made so many lovely friends whom I have shared some great experiences with, including going to Gala days, getting in semi-finals and winning the grand final three years in a row. We had some very successful games and some not so much, but we couldn’t have achieved any of this without our amazing coaches and managers. They come to training every week with more tips and tricks to beat the team that is always one place ahead of you on the ladder..

Last year I thought I would give umpiring a go and honestly, at the time this was one of the scariest things I thought I would ever do. First, I studied the whole netball rules booklet in preparation for a test, which I had to get 75% or more on, and I thought that was the scariest bit, but I was wrong. Next, we had to go to Pennant Hills Park and do the practical section. This was the first time I had ever actually physically umpired a game… the scary meter just moved up to nine. Of course, I was freaking out for no reason. The mentors helping us were amazing, they gave us lots of compliments and lots of feedback on how to improve. All the other girls were so nice, I kept thinking they were judging me, but how could they really, we were all going through the same thing. When the time came for me to umpire my first game, I was really nervous, but it was fine because we all had mentors for the first year.

That year went by so quickly and at the end of it I was loving it. When it was time to start umpiring again for the second year everything was smooth sailing, thanks to all the help I received the year before. One extra bonus was that this year I would get paid! Starting umpiring, helped my confidence grow, not just on the court but also as a person. Overall, I have loved playing netball and umpiring with Galston netball club, and I really would like to encourage lots of other girls to get involved with the best sport in the world”.

Galston Netball Club fields teams aged 6 years to adult in the Hills District Netball Association winter competition and runs clinics for our younger players throughout the year. In the year players turn 13 they can start umpiring.

For further information please contact [email protected]