AFTER watching his sons officiate as boundary umpires, Bayne Floyd decided he would pick up the flags to signals goals and behinds in the AFL Central Victoria region.
It was in 2016 when Bayne officiated in his first match with the Bendigo Umpires Association.
Not only has he wave the flags thousands of times, Bayne now plays a key role as BUA goal umpire coach and goal appointments officer.
It’s a role he has teamed up with Paul Martin to do for an umpiring group which covers more than 40 matches across a weekend.
The BUA’s territory covers the Bendigo FNL, North Central, Heathcote District, Loddon Valley, Central Victoria FL women’s, and Bendigo junior.
“Two of my sons were umpiring, so I would go along and watch their matches,” Bayne said.
Tom and Matthew have both progressed from boundary to now be field umpires.
Another of Bayne’s sons, Jacob was also a footy umpire, but this year has focused on soccer.
“It was in 2016 when Dean Goodridge, the BUA coach, approached me about umpiring,” said Bayne.
“The umpiring group was short on numbers and Dean asked if I was interested in having a go.
“It all just went from there,” Bayne said of his run to an on-field role.
A highlight of his umpiring stint was at Maryborough a few seasons ago when Bayne, Tom, Matthew and Jacob teamed up to umpire a match.
“That was a great day,” Bayne said.
Now in his third season as goal umpire coach, Bayne works with some long-time goal umpirs and newcomers.
“We have video analysis and provide feedback to the umpires.
“A lot of our training is skills based.
“Umpiring is a great way to build confidence, leadership, and also for fitness,” Bayne said.
“We also gives tips on how to react to different situations in a match.
“I rely heavily on Paul for his advice and knowledge. It’s a partnership where we help one another and have great support from the other coaches and the umpires.”
For Bayne there are several key factors on why he took on and stayed on as an umpire.
“To umpire with one of the boys, both, or all three is always exciting.
“I was never going to reach great heights as a player, but can do so as an umpire.
“Being an umpire is a great way to be involved with the game.
“As a goal umpire you have a great view of the action. It can be the best seat in the house, although you are standing.”
Just like a lot of clubs, the BUA is always on the lookout for recruits.
“Whether you have umpired before or never, there’s plenty of support available.”
“The BUA is a great club to be part of,” said Bayne.
Written by Nathan Dole.