Referee Talent Development Update: December 2016

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Vinny Munro for On the Mark     19 Dec 2016     Getty Images

Can we look back on 2016 with some pride and satisfaction of what we have achieved? Then there are two simple questions: if we can, then why; and if we can't, then why.

Each year brings new challenges, but we must take the time to reflect on what we have done and celebrate success.

I have just finished the end of year reviews for my group of Referees. While we are always trying to succeed, and climb the ladder upwards, we must take stock of what has got us this far. Firstly: congratulate yourselves on what you have done well, then take the learnings you have encountered during the year, and apply all this into your plan for next year.

Not everyone can referee a Final; it is the sport we are in, simple as that. BUT if we can look at ourselves and say we are a better referee but overall a better person, then that is growth and the success box should be ticked. As I have said before, refereeing is not all about what happens on the paddock; that is only a small part of the puzzle.

There are some exciting developments ahead for my role. We are going to experiment with a pilot programme for "talent spotters" in the northern area. I don't want to see any talented referee slip through the net, so the more eyes out there, the better for New Zealand refereeing.

Secondly, I am going to assist a group of referees that are nearing the Wider Training Group (WTG) level, with their local coach, I will guide them through a plan for the year and then monitor this throughout the season. This will enable a higher level of input when/if they are selected for the WTG, as they will be better prepared.

As it is the time for the festive season, I want to thank you all for the support and commitment shown this year. Make sure you all have a well-earned break, spend that special, quality time with your families and stay safe, we need you all back for 2017.