AN under-7 teeball game was called off last week after continuous derision of an umpire and coach.
A parent at the Carine Cats teeball intraclub game told the Times how an umpire had been subjected to repeated criticism and a team coach was abused for making tactical changes.
‘Some people were having a right go at the coach for swapping fielders’ position, claiming it was against the rules,’ the parent said.
‘Some even yelled out that the coach should be banned, even though he was playing entirely within the rules of the game.
‘It was not the sort of scene you would expect in sport, let alone an under-7 game involving young children. Apart from the coach being subjected to criticism, some also gave the umpire a real going over verbally.
‘After one particular outburst the umpire asked one woman ‘what’s your name?’ presumably to report her but the response was ‘I don’t have to tell you my name’.
‘The game degenerated into an ugly spectacle with some adults denigrating officials. It was totally unacceptable and I’m not surprised the umpire decided to call the game off 15 minutes early.’
The parents and umpires attended a meeting on Saturday morning and while no punishments were handed down, the club issued a reminder to those involved about its code of conduct.
The Carine Cats Ball Club’s code of conduct, published on its website, lists specific standards required from parents and spectators, as well as players and coaches.
Among those are the need to respect officials’ decisions and never to sledge or harass players, coaches or officials.
Carine Cats Ball Club president Chris Spartalis described the under-7 game incident as bizarre and said to her knowledge, parents’ behaviour had never led to a junior game at Carine ending early in her 14 years of involvement.
‘It is not to be tolerated in any sport and certainly not in our club,’ she said.
‘We just hope everybody learns from this.’
The club’s umpiring co-ordinator and coaching co-ordinator will stay with the teams and umpires who were involved during their next few games.