o TtUQBY. A CHAPTER ON REFEREES. (By Dropkick.) The death of King Edward the Seventh has cast a gloom on football as well as other circles, and after the hasty postponement of last Saturday's matches there is little to record and little that deserves note. It is impossible to make bricks without straw, as the saying goes — though "Dropkick" cannot recall ever seeing bricks being made with straw — so the best must be done under the circumstances. There was an extraordinary outburst of the Referees' Association afc the meeting of the Management Committee of the Wellington Rugby Union on Wednesday^ night. After the confessions of the veteran chairman, Mr. Dan M'Kenzie, and the fervent incriminatkms and recriminations of his colleagues — well, one must change one's idea of a referee. One loved to regard a referee as a calm, impassive, dispassionate arbiter of football — a man above all vulgar motives and emotions such as vanity, fastidiousness, touchiness, and amour propre — a being superior to prejudice and bias, owning no master save the laws he interprets. Alas for an ideal destroyed ! The unconscious revelations of the deputation on Wednesday night were infinitely more damaging to the association, as it now stands constituted, than any of their conscioos allegations were : to the union or the Appointment Board. ■ Take some of the points the leader of j the deputation endeavoured to make :—: — (1) Bia3 of the club members on the board in favour o v f certain clubs. I (2) Disregard of private convenience I of referees. (3) Lack of opportunity for the promotion of junior referees. (4) Insufficient representation of Referees' Association on Appointment Board. Mr. M'Kenzie said a great deal more with quite unnecessary tediousness, but these were the main grievances. The first was effectually answered by explicit denials from MessTs. Perry and Sweeney, who declared' that, there was no discontentment on the Appointment Board, that the nomination of referees for particular matches had not been opposed, and that there had been no club bias whatever. The second grievance, as suggested at the meeting on Wednesday, might be met by more businesslike methods on the part of the Referees' Association itseK. The third point lay in that there was discontent among junior referees, on account of the poor prospect under the present system of their getting a chance of controlling a senior game. The association had a- classification committee, which examines junior referees with a view to ascertaining their qualifications for higher grade work. At present a preference was -expressed by the Appointment Board for certain senior reieTees. This appears to be the most legitimate' grievance of all, but the Referees' Association has at present threes members on the Appointment Board, against two representing the union, and two the clubs. If tliey brought down certain nominations of referees, it is not likely they would be opposed. The deputation was so informed on Wednesday, so in regard to the third point the solution is in the power of the Referees' Association itself, which is adequately represented in proportion to the other interested parties — the union and the clubs. This disposes of the fourth point. The whole business is a most interesting disclosure in psychology. Air. M'Kenzie .remarked naively that some members of his association had been refereeing for years, and had never been allotted a match on No. 1 Athletic Bark. Clearly, then, from the light this seems to throw on the motives of referees—or some of them — the height of ambition is to referee on No. 1 Athletic Park. And the idea of the referee — the fixed and predominant idea — is not so much to control the game to which he is appointed faithfully and well, as to conduct himself so that one day — not to far in the future — he may figure in all the glory of pure white raiment like some archangel weilding, nob a flaming sword, but a shrieking whistle over the seventh heaven of No. 1 Athletic Park. Alas, referees are human after all. Let them not plead in the future "The simple round, the common task, will furnish all we need to ask," and vaunt a supernatural devotion to -the homely duty of controlling "silly" (Mr. Card's word) fifth-class, and fourth-class games .as dnty for duty's sake. They are all honourable men, but, like Caesar, they are ambitious, and aspire to No. 1 Athletic Park. Certainly a laudable aspiration. The truth is exactly as the chairman iof the management committee suggested to the deputation on Wednesday night. The Wellington Referees' Association, should look into its own affairs first, and touch them up a little. NORTHERN UNION TEAM. The English Northern Union team to visit Australia and New Zealand is composed as follows : — FDLL-BACKS. Age. ft in st lb Club. J. Sharrocks 27 5 8 14 0 Wigan. English International, 1909-10. Frank Young 25 5 7 12 8 Leeds. Welsh International, 1908-3-10. THREE-QUARTERS. J. Leytham 30 5 9 12 8 Wigan. English International, 1907-8. Wm. Batten 21 5 10i 13 4 Hunslet. English International, 1907-8-0-10. Fred Farrar 25 5 8i 10 10 Hunslet. Yorkshire County. j Jas. Lomas 30 5 7 13 5 Salford j English International, 1907-8-9-10. B. Jenkins 25 5 8 12 10 Wigan. Welsh International, 1907-8-9-10. C. Jenkins 28 5 8 11 6 Ebbw Vale. Welsh International, 1007-8-9-10. J. Riley 28 5 0k 13 0 Halifax. Yorkshire County. J. Bartholomew Huddersfield. HALVES. John Thomas 25 5 7 11 0 Wigan. Wehh International, 1907-8-9. James Davies24 5 8J 11 8 Huddersfleld. Welsh International, 1009-10. T. Newbould 27 5 6 12 0 Wakefleld. English International, 1909-10. F. Smith 25 6 0 12 5 Hunslet. English International. 1909-10. FORWARDS. A. E. Avery 20 5 lOJ 14 4 Oldham. English International, 1909-10. F. Boylen 28 5 8J 13 5 Hull. English International, 1908-9-10. E. Curzon 20 511 14 0 Salford. Lancashire County. T. Helm 24 5 101 13 2 Oldham. Scottish International. W. Jukes 27 5 8i 12 10 Hunslet. English International, 1908-9-TO. ' H. Kershaw 25 5 8 12 0 Wakefield. New to lionouis.. L. Ramsdale 24 6 1 14 10 Wigan. Lancashire Counts. G. Ruddlck 3D 510 13-4 BrouglitoD Rgre. .WeUh ißttrofctional, 1907-8-9.
F. G. Shugars 29 511 14 6 Warrington. Welsh International, 1907-8-9-10. W. Ward 21 510 13 4 Leeds. New to honours. F. Webster 27 5 9 13 4 Leedi. Yorkshire County. W. Winstanley 24 5 0 13 9 Leigh. Lancashire County. Team includes eighteen internationals— nine English, eight Welsh, and one Scotch. Remaining men have represented their counties. ASSOCIATION. (By "Vanguard.") At a recent meeting of the Wellington Football Association, Mr. E. A. Anderson, referee in the Union v. Artillery match, wrote congratulating the association on the excellent start made in Wednesday League football. He stated that the fine defensivo work and combination displayed by the Artillery forwards would have* been a lesson to Saturday players. As this is the first letter of its kind ever received by the committee, I would suggest that other referees do likewise, and thus give the Management Committee an idea, of the play generally from week to week. A. Mouatt has donned the shirt for Olympic this season, after having had a spell. He still has some of the vigorous dash of former seasons left in him. Nimmo, who played goal for Y.M-C.A. against Olympic, has the making of an excellent goalkeeper, some of his saves being splendid. The scores — 10 goals to I— in the OlymEic v. Y.M. C. A. match, proves how comination will tell, and Saturday players should take a lesson. Wilson, left full-back for Swifts seniors, is disappointing, and will have to do better to retain first division rank. It seems as if want of training is the cause. The secretary of Wellington Referees' Association has brought up the matter of referees sent to lecture Wednesday players on evenings to be decided upon, and it was agreed to adopt this course. M'Mahon, late of Oriental seniors, is another recruit from Rugby ranks, and plays for Artillery Wednesday team. His play gives one the impression that he is a distinct acquisition. C. E. Fordham is proving a capable chairman at referees' meetings, and his impartial rulings are given, in a manner which inspiree confidence. Auckland football was to have started on Saturday last. The Northern Association has thirty teams competing this season. They propose sending a team to Wellington for the Brown Shield towards the end of June or the beginning of July. The Association game in Dunedin opened with somewhat of a record. Three senior games were played, and the scoring in each was the same : I—o.1 — 0. City and Northern, two first-class teams last season, were among the defeated. Ravensbourne (Dunedin) a junior team last season, have , advanced into senior football with praiseworthy effect, and beat Mornington by I—o.1 — 0. It is good to see junior teams coming on like this, and one would be glad to seei some of our own juniors come up to senior grade next season. It is a pity that someone does not see that Newtown Park is properly marked out. On Wednesday week and Saturday last only tho side-lines were marked, and then the lines were anything but straight. In places they were a yard out. After having given various decisions not according to the laws, of the game, a referee in a recent match at halftime asked one of the captains in a boys' match how he would liko the game refereed, and received the following smart answer : — "That is what you are here for, sir. It is not for me to tell you." I was recently informed that a cei*tain referee in a boys match made the boy throwing in the ball keep both feet together on the line. Law 5 says that the player throwing in the ball may have any part of 'both feet on the line when in the act of throwing. In the" English Association Cup replayed final, on. Thursday week, 60,000 people witnessed Newcastle United defeat Barnsley by 2 goals to 0. A crowd of 150,000 gave a great ovation to the winners on their return to Newcastle. An official welcome was also accorded, and the journey of the team through the city was a triumphal progress. This (says the Referee) looks like football enthusiasm gone mad. The match between England and Belgium, played at Brussels on 26th March, attracted a considerable number of spectators, among them being a number of English supporters of the visiting team. A very hard-fought match ended in a dravr of 2 goals aIL At half-time the Belgians led by 2 goals to 1. The Englishmen, however, succeeded in drawing level in the second half. This is the first check of any kind the English amateurs have experienced against a Continental side. The Belgians are improving. According to a cable message, up to Saturday week Aston Villa, with 53 points, and Liverpool, with 48 points, were at the head of the League first division. Chelsea and Bolton Wanderers drop back to the second division, Manchester City (54) and Oldham Athletic (53) replacing them.