Proctor Park Challenge success for upcoming female referees


As many as 60 promising young Football NSW referees recently took part in the 2023 Proctor Park Challenge, a tournament famous for being a pre cursor to the commencement of the female football season.

In what was a huge weekend of female football action at Proctor Park, as many as 250 matches took shape across two-days in February with age groups as young as Under 12’s right through to the Under 17’s participating.

There were over 20 referee coaches from the National Premier Leagues as well as A-Leagues watching on, giving the next generation of female officials, tips and pointers as this tournament also acted as a pre-season training camp.

Over 40 referees who officiated at the tournament were Legacy Referee Scholarship recipients, all of which were being mentored and coached on their first matches.

There were also Football NSW Referee Development Panel (RDP) and Football NSW Referee Academy members who also officiated.

“I’m incredibly proud of all our referees and referee coaches that attended the 2023 Proctor Park Challenge.

“A referee’s first few games define whether they continue refereeing or walk away forever and from post-tournament feedback, every referee is keen to get back out on the field,” said Football NSW’s Community Referees Football Coordinator, Emma Kocbek.

Football NSW would like to thank Bathurst District Football Inc for their ongoing support of the referees attending Proctor Park Challenge.

Football NSW, together with Northern NSW Football and Football Australia, is proud to be working alongside the NSW Government to facilitate a $10 million investment into the NSW football community. This includes the women in football scholarship program.

The referee aspect of this program includes a scholarship to complete the entry level referee course (Level 4) conducted by Football NSW as well as a referee starter pack.

More details on the referee scholarship program can be found here.

Once qualified, all recipients of a Legacy referee scholarship will be encouraged to join their local referee branch with the goal to boost female referee participation at the community level.