15-year-old Lachlan Walker has spent a decade of playing football at Wauchope FC but has found a passion and zealousness for officiating and has already begun notching achievements despite his young age.
In the short time that he has been a referee, Lachlan has already begun officiating Men’s Premier League matches in the Football Mid North Coast region and this year was selected as a participant of the Talented Officials Program (TOP) as well as selected to officiate at the Telstra State SAP Championships.
Lachlan stated that he desired to become a referee because of the lack of numbers the game currently has, and since then, has extended his football knowledge tenfold.
“The main thing that prompted me to be a referee was just my love for the game and I wanted to help players out by bringing more referees to the game,” Lachlan said.
“I love being able to help people in the game. When I’m refereeing younger people, I like to show them the right way if they get something wrong like a throw-in. I love helping them and then watching them succeed.
“Since becoming a referee, I approach the game with a much better understanding on what I can and cannot do. I believe being a referee gives you an advantage when playing as you will know what right and what’s wrong.”
An avid supporter of the Newcastle Jets, Lachlan was introduced and encouraged to referee by his older brother who also is an official, and he recommends that others, especially younger people like himself, challenge them to referee and improve their football knowledge.
“My older brother is also a referee, but I like to think I’m better than him,” Lachlan joked.
“I would encourage others to become referees because it’s a great experience for them to learn more about the game and how to control it.”
Lachlan confessed that although he loves to play the game, and enjoys all the speed and skill, that he’s pushing to continue improving his refereeing and even has set goals in mind for the future.
“I would like to strive to go as far as I can as a referee,” he said.
“I would love the make it to refereeing State League teams before I’m 18,” Lachlan concluded.
Lachlan’s progress is outstanding and delighting to witness and he is definitely worthy of special mention as the last profiled official of Newcastle Permanent Referee Recognition Week.
To view all the Referee Profiles from throughout the week, click here.