Three-day Premier Skills workshop for Indian referees kicks off in Navi Mumbai
The Premier Skills level 2 referee course for Indian referees got underway at Beverly Park in Navi Mumbai on Monday. The three-day workshop in collaboration with the Premier League is being conducted by Ray Olivier, Head of Professional Referee Development and Iain Williamson, Match Observer and CORE Performance Coach, PGMOL (Professional Game Match Officials Limited).
The workshop will be attended by 30 referees, who are affiliated to the Maharashtra Football Association and officiate in the Hero Indian Super League (ISL). It will feature both theory presentations and practical drills with morning sessions running from 9 am to 12:30 pm and afternoon sessions taking place from 2 pm to 6 pm. The theory sessions will be held in Beverly Park, while Fr. Agnel Ground is the location for the practical sessions.
Speaking to indiansuperleague.com just ahead the commencement of the workshop, Olivier explained what he hopes to achieve with the help of this programme. “We are just about to start our programme for 3 days. The first day is to welcome the participants from India. There are 30 referees who are just starting their refereeing career. The programme is all about helping them develop their skills in refereeing and [giving them] opportunity to gain some knowledge from the course,” he said.
Olivier added: “It also gives us an opportunity to make sure that we can learn from each other. The programme looks at exemplifying the laws of the game, looks at checking their experiences with some practical activities on the field which will give them opportunity to practise some examples of refereeing and then we'll have some fitness training which will guide them to their fitness goals on the field.”
Classroom sessions on Day 1 included an opening ceremony followed by introductions, aims and learning outcomes of the workshop as well as an interactive quiz about the laws of the game. The topics of focus for the theory session prior to lunch on the first day included conflict resolution and techniques in managing the game and players. Free-kick management was the topic of focus in the post lunch theory session.
The practical session before lunch on Day 1 saw the Indian referees taking part in positioning and movement drills, warm-up routines, while also being guided through game and player management techniques. The topics of focus for the post lunch practical session were warm-ups, how to manage attacking free-kicks and set play-situations, as well as in game experience with the referees themselves acting as players.
The schedule for Day 2 will begin with back-to-back pitch sessions with a brief half an hour break in between. Warm-ups, speed and agility exercises, assistant refereeing techniques and offside practice with referees posing as players will be the topics of focus for the first session, whereas DOGSO (Denial of an Obvious Goal-Scoring Opportunity) will be in focus during the second session.
The classroom sessions on Day 2 will revolve around how to keep children safe, advice for referees and assistant referees on tight offside situations with the help of practical examples as well as foul recognition through in-depth review of match incidents.
The final day will include four theory workshops with two of them scheduled to happen before lunch and two after. Day three’s only practical session, which will be sandwiched between the two classroom sessions after lunch, will see the participants involved in a practical match experience that will offer them a chance to act as a referee or assistant referee to practise skills.
The theory workshop before lunch on Day 3 will have another interactive quiz on the laws of the game with topics in focus ranging from effective communication to teamwork, to how to use body language and personality of a player effectively to aid decision-making. The penultimate session of the workshop will lay emphasis on how to read the game, tactical advice and anticipation of play. This will be followed by a positive reflection and self-evaluation of the participants in the final session before a short closing ceremony.