So right now I am exhausted after a weekend of two quality games; a college game line and a mens game middle.
My games have been limited to weekends until Thanksgiving and an odd weekday game in October.
The game went great! I was quite happy with how it ended.
On a rewind back, I remember a penalty area decision I had to make. A defender slide tackled to get the ball in the penalty area but instead kicked the shins of his opponent. His opponent stumbled but regained his balance and kept running. This confused me and I let play continue. Notice I didn’t say I played advantage (because I didn’t signal it). The striker continued for the next two seconds and couldn’t finish it. As a result, there were appeals from the attacking team on why it wasn’t a penalty kick and also appeals to the striker why he didn’t take the hit and fall down to win it. Regardless the game had to move on and it was an odd scenario that I decided to store at the back of my mind for analysis later.
Later there was a second instance where the same players were involved in almost the exact same position except the defender held the attacker briefly (2 seconds) but enough for him to lose his balance. The attacker then quickly regained balance but I had had enough with the shenanigans and blew the whistle long and hard for the penalty kick. With no surprise there were yells of displeasure from the players and the bench since it didn’t appear to have a big effect on the player but enough was enough really. The defender also earned a caution for persistent infringement as well as USB.
The weather was pleasant. Only a bit chilly but nothing my running’s warmth couldn’t overcome. I did enjoy the running to keep up with play as there were definitely over 30 shots on goal (not necessarily on target) and play was end-to-end with dozens of obvious goal-scoring opportunities. I thought a dismissal was eminent on any one of them but I kept encouraging defenders “don’t foul” which thankfully kept them from shirt tugging or anything dramatic.
Something I experienced that I hadn’t experienced for a very long time in-game happened. To be specific, four years. A muscle cramp 75 minutes into the game during one of my sprints. I felt it towards the end of a particular sprint and slowed down my pace for the remaining 15. It gradually worsened and I had reduced my speed to a jog by that point (I was more thankful I could continue at all). luckily I pulled through till the end and even one added minute without anyone noticing a slightly reduced pace.
My positioning this game was also odd because I decided to abandon the traditional diagonal in favour of simply being close to play. I really don’t know if I did it because I was rusty (a month off) or if it was something I thought the game needed. Nevertheless I was excused because I was able to keep up with play.
That’s it for most of the game really. Now it’s the wait for the report…
This week is filled with referee clinics mainly consisting of instructing and a meeting with a higher-level referee, later in the week, to discuss some high difficulty law questions so it’s back to the Law book for a refresher this week! Looking forward to it.