#FridayFocus Malta hosts Umpire Seminar

27th October 2017

Malta was the host of the latest SNG weekend, with 15 umpires participating in seminars and officiating games.

The Malta Hockey Association President Chris Busuttil Leaver and David Agius (General Secretary) spoke both a few words before the seminar was opened on Saturday. 15 participants with different ages and levels joined the seminar, with the youngest participant being 14 years old and umpiring his first senior match on this weekend.

Conductor Philip Schellekens (NED) showed 15 participants the new FIH briefing video followed by a good discussion what that video means for the Maltese umpires. A video of fouls happening after blowing the whistle and 14 ‘set-up clips’ of taking free hits at the top of the circle (all videos made by the Dutch umpire video specialist Ewoud Hol) were highly appreciated by the participants.

Different subjects were discussed during the seminar: Obstruction, 3D-hockey, Aerials, positioning, communication with players and colleagues, free hits at top of the circle and much more.

During the seminar 3 games were played at the national hockey ground, with all umpires officiating at least half a game each. Like everywhere in the world, talented and enthusiastic umpires are to be found in Malta.

Very special was the ‘new’ approach with mainly positive feedback that the participants had to give to themselves after umpiring. The question ‘what went well?’ was not always easy to answer. Umpires want to go too quickly to points of improvement. Positive self-reflection went better and better during the feedback sessions.

The seminar was a kind of new start for the Maltese umpires. Plans were made how to follow-up the course, and the enthusiastic participants already looked forward to this. Within a week the first meetings were planned to do a follow up as soon as possible.

At the end of the well organised seminar President Chris Busuttil Leaver and conductor Philip Schellekens awarded certificates to all participants.


James Mizzi (l), receives his certificate as participant from President Chris Busuttil Leaver (middle) and conductor Philip Schellekens (NED). He will now take the lead in the follow up of the seminar. 

The youngest participant of the seminar, Luca, was 14 years young


President Chris Busuttil Leaver (middle) and organiser of the seminar David Agius (General secretary) (right) hand over a souvenir from Hockey Association Malta to Philip Schellekens, conductor of the seminar

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