BAFRA Newsflash

Issue: 09/14

6th March 2014


71 and counting

The following 71 members have booked their places at the Convention. If you are not listed it may be because you have only recently confirmed your place in the last couple of days. An updated list will be issued next week.

S Alger, M Allen, J Bennett, A Binns, J Briggs, J Brookes-Lewis, A Brooks, R Brown, D Burridge, M Burrows, C Caroll, D Carr, M Cavanagh, P Clarke, A Cockerill, M Cockerill, G Coleman, I Davies, R Davis, S Egan, T Fisher, K Gambrill, K Glover, J Graveling J Griffin, B Griffiths, D Hewitt, R Hill, D Holt, H Horner, J Ikins, C Jarvis, D Knight, A Lambert, L Lebolt, T Lindeman, A Lovell, J Malia, A Newsham, R Newton, T Ockendon, C Olsson, D Parsons, P Parsons, E Paterson, M Prentice, A Price, H Richardson, R Samples, C Sandle, I Sneddon, S Sombati, K Stanton, D Sterling, P Sutton, L Taylor, S Taylor, P Thom, F Thomson, S Tonkinson, D Walsh, K Wickham, A Wilson, M Wilson, H Wiltshire, L Wood, L Wooton, D Wright, B Yates & C Young .

It’s Closing Time. Almost!

The closing date for registering to attend the Convention is Friday 14th March. You can still come along if you decide nearer the time however we will only have Anniversary Coins, Convention Packs, DVDs etc. for those who pre-register before this date. Also worth noting is the accommodation subsidy will not be available after this date as we need to confirm numbers to the Convention Centre and make a payment. To register please contact Charles Young at Full details of the Convention and accommodation rates can be found at the following link:

Programme of Events

The Convention Programme is taking shape and should be completed within the next 7 days. Again we have included a total of 8 different Break-out sessions, covering a variety of topics, which everyone will be able to attend. There will also be plenty of game film to review and various presentations.


Payment for Convention rooms are due by 20th March, and cheques should be made payable to BAFRA Ltd and sent to Charles Young at 8 Shaw Square, Earby, Barnoldswick, Lancashire, BB18 6SF. Cheques may not be cashed till this date.

If you wish to pay out of game fees please send an email to If paying electronically please quote booking reference and name and use the account numbered 10255350, sort code 16-16-11, BAFRA Ltd, RBS, Cheetham Hill, Manchester. Please let us know by email if you use this method to

Davie Parsons


Since 2007 BAFRA has provided the Chain Crew for every NFL game played at Wembley (8 BAFRA officials at each game). In 2014 three games are scheduled to be played there, on 28th September, 26th October and 9th November. I have already received a number of informal expressions of interest from officials asking to be considered for one of the positions.

After discussion with the BAFRA Selection Committee it has been agreed that these opportunities will not be advertised until we receive formal notification from the NFL Vice-President Operations. If and when we receive a request to provide the Chain Crew for these games we will then advertise for officials to apply to be considered for these exciting roles.

Richard Vernon


CRPs were received for the following teams this week:

Gloucestershire, Kent, Bangor, BNU, Reading, City, UWS

Jonathan Ikins


A reminder that the Annual General Meeting of BAFRA Limited will take place at 5:00pm on 5th April 2014 at Yarnfield Park Training & Conference Centre, Yarnfield, Stone, Staffordshire, ST15 0NL during the Convention. Please note that all members are entitled to attend although only qualified members may stand for election or vote.

I will maintain details of the director posts up for election at this AGM showing who has been nominated. As of 7:30pm on Tuesday 4th March, the position is as follows:

Nominated for President

David Parsons (#425); proposed by Steve Tonkinson (#99), seconded by Les Connor (#152)

Nominated for General Secretary

Paul Sutton (#312); proposed by Mike Cavanagh (#465), seconded by William Marriage (#293)

Nominated for Director of Training

Pete Thom (#200); proposed by Brian Yates (#29), seconded by Ian Papworth (#366)

Nominated for Director without Portfolio #1

Martin Cockerill (#345); proposed by Larry Rigby (#269), seconded by Alisha Cockerill (#573)

All nominations must be with me by 5:00pm on 8th March 2014 so this is the last reminder to submit your nominations. The directors encourage qualified members to put themselves forward for all of the above posts.

Nomination papers have gone out to all qualified members electronically. If you believe that you should have received such papers and they have not arrived by the time you read this, please contact me.

Paul Sutton


The BAFRA Selection Committee is pleased to announce the following crews for the 2013/14 BUCS National Championship and Trophy game. They will be South Leeds Stadium on Saturday 29th March 2014


Championship Game

National Trophy


Les Connor

Amir Brooks


Davie Parsons

Martin Gibson

Head Linesman

Shawn Sombati

Martin Cockerill

Line Judge

David Knight

Alisha Cockerill

Back Judge

Alan Dobson

Phil Clarke

Field Judge

Andrew Binns

Julian Mallia

Side Judge

Mark Wilson

Graham Hedges

Please join the selection committee in congratulating the crews on their appointments.

Richard Vernon


As part of our recruitment process, prospective members are offered the chance to attend a game. Once the best option has been found they will be given the details and put in contact with the referee.

If you are on a crew where a prospective member comes along, please welcome them and allow them to attend the pregame and invite them to shadow an official during the game as ball boy or down box operator, this way the official they are shadowing can answer any questions they may have and they can get a better idea of what we see as officials.

James Meredith


Congratulations to Anton Jarbol on completing all of the requirements necessary to become Qualified. Thanks to Alan Dobson and all those who are helping with Anton‘s training.

Pete Thom


The minutes from the February Board meeting are available in the member’s area of the website at:

Paul Sutton


We are currently having a problem with the email address, if you wish to contact the director of training please use

Pete Thom


A BAFA Disciplinary Committee has upheld an appeal by Northumbria Mustangs against the disqualification of their player Ben Griffin on 17th February. The initial report said that Griffin had fouled a defenceless opponent after the ball was dead. Video evidence showed that the ball was still alive at the time of the contact and the opponent was not defenceless.

Jim Briggs


With the success of the Opal series (Flag). BAFA are launching the Sapphire Series (contact) to drive forward the participation of women in the game. We are currently in the planning stages of a number of tournaments and are looking at BAFRA members being available where they have capacity to cover the following dates (Venues still to be confirmed)

The dates for tournaments will be:

Round 4S - Sapphire South Conference - at Southampton - 22nd March

Round 4N - Sapphire North Conference - at Teesside - 22nd March

Anyone interested please contact Martin Cockerill at

Martin Cockerill


Following on from the past two years when a total of nearly £2500 has been raised, BAFRA will again select a charity to support this year.

All members are invited to suggest a charity for us to support in 2014 and a ballot to decide which is to be this year’s charity will be held on the Saturday of the Convention. All members present will be entitled to vote on this. If you have a suggestion, please let me know via e-mail by the 17th of March. Please include the name of the charity, a short description of the charity’s purpose and a link to their website.

Paul Sutton


Northampton Nemesis 13-6 BNU Buccaneers

UWS Pyros 6-35 Napier Knights

Bangor Muddogs 16-14 MMU Eagles

Plymouth Blitz 32-22 Bristol Barracuda

Portsmouth Destroyers 40-0 Reading Knights

Solent Redhawks 56-0 Oxford Lancers

Kent Falcons 31-6 Canterbury Chargers

Cambridge Pythons 34-0 BNU Buccaneers

Westminster Dragons 20-0 City Sentinels









New this week

Chris Geldard


BNU Buccaneers



After a play was over 81 head butted an opponent


Previous weeks

Firas Iskandarani


Brunel Burners



While the ball was live, the Brunel assistant coach entered the field and used abusive language towards the Back Judge. He was removed from the team area under Rule 13-7-2.

09/03/14 v Glasgow Tigers





New this week

Bangor Muddogs

Although Bangor were the home team, the game was played at MMU Eagles. The field was not available until 30 minutes after the scheduled start time. Game balls old and worn. 3yd marks actually at the 2yd.

Kevin Stanton #157


Kent Falcons

Played at Orpington Rugby Club, only outside hash marks and none in centre field, no marked team/coaches boxes, and only an 80 yard pitch.

Larry Rigby #269

09/03/14 v Surrey Stingers

Gloucester Gladiators

On arrival at the ground, no teams were present and no field was marked. After approximately half an hour, contact was made with the Gloucestershire team president who informed us that the game had been called off in the week. BAFRA and the league had not been informed

Jed-Brookes Lewis #395


Reading Knights

Reading were officially the home team - however the game was played at Portsmouth's home field. The field was marked with NFL style hash marks and at one end there were only 9 yards between the marked 10 yard line and the goal line. In the 3rd quarter there was a 12 minute injury delay. Game played with good sportsmanship in awful weather conditions.

David Knight #135


Outstanding items from previous weeks

Exeter Demons

Officials were advised beforehand that only 1 set of goalposts were available, so all offensive series drove towards the goalposted end. Field was a substitute 3G field due to usual venue being flooded, which meant no usual markings. Team did a good job creating lines & hash-marks with duct-tape which lasted well for the entirety of the game.

Simon Ryan #408


UH Sharks

100 Yard Field with the following line problems: no 9 yards marks or numbers and NFL style hash marks in the centre of field. Entire Chain Crew changed at half time due to a "party". Plaudits to both teams for playing the game in a very sportsmanlike manner with good humoured banter.

Chris Jarvis #10

09/03/14 v Liverpool Fury

Brighton Tsunami

Outer hash marks were directly on the side lines without any spacing. The goals were attached to a fence a few yards behind the end line. The changing rooms were poor and the showers were not usable.

David Knight #135

09/03/14 v Sunderland Spartans

Royal Holloway Bears

Royal Holloway's field is marked to the width of a rugby field rather than a football field.

Keith Wickham #423

09/03/14 v UEA Pirates

Swansea Titans

Game played at Llandarcy Academy of Sport. Field had been re-marked and markings were much clearer than the last game. However, PAT marks were at the 2-yard line, and coaches areas were too close to the side lines.

Amir Brooks #593

09/03/14 v Newcastle Raiders

Kingston Cougars

Played at Orpington RFC as Kingston's regular ground was not available. Pitch was 80 yards in length and 170 yards in width with 9 yard end zones. Hashmarks only on one sideline. No 9-yard marks or inbounds lines only marks on the main yard lines to mark the inbounds spot. No team area markings. Game suspended with 3 minutes remaining in the first half as the ambulance wanted to ferry injured players to hospital leaving the game without medical cover. After a discussion with their base and both head coaches the ambulance crew agreed to delay transporting the injured players and remain and cover the game.

Timm Ockendon #481


Imperial Immortals

Field was very muddy but actually held up surprisingly well given the quantity of rain that fell during the game. Play was held up for a few minutes in the first half after a small foot-sized hole was discovered in the playing surface that had to be filled in.

Dean Wright #553

09/03/14 v Derby Braves

Portsmouth Destroyers

Crew arrived at the venue 1 hour and 45 minutes before kick off - it was noted that the home team was present but the away team had not arrived yet. After consultation with the home team it was clear that they were making many attempts to contact the opponents. As there was no response from the away team the crew had no alternative than to invoke rule 13-4-7a and wait 60 minutes after the scheduled kick off time. During this 60 minutes no response was received from the visiting team despite continuous attempts from the home team to make contact. After the 60 minutes the game was called off by the officials. I would like to thank the patience of the coaching staff, the players and the supporter of Portsmouth, the medical staff and the rest of the crew during this process.

David Knight #135

09/03/14 v UCL Rams



New this week

Play: Time is running out towards the end of the 4th quarter. Team A are losing by 1 points and have 3rd and 15 on the Team B 20 yard line, Team A decide to go for a field goal. The kick is blocked by B90 behind the line of scrimmage. The ball bounces backwards and rolls out of bounds on the team B 25 yard line. The ball never crossed the line of scrimmage. There are 3 seconds left on the clock when the ball goes out of bounds. Ruling? Next play? Clock?

Last week

Play: A's ball, 3rd and 16, on A's 29. A23 takes the snap from the centre and runs toward the sideline. When he is unable to find an eligible receiver, he throws the ball into the sidelines. The pass as thrown from outside the tackle box and crossed the neutral zone extended. B33 held A88 on A's 36 during A23's run.

Ruling: A's ball, 1st and 10, on A's 39. A23 throws a legal forward pass since he is made from outside the tackle box crossed the neutral zone extended. B33 held an eligible receiver, A88, during the down. B33 held an eligible receiver during A23's run. The 10-yard penalty is enforced from the previous spot, A's 29, and carries an automatic first down.


New this week

Game Situation: 1st and 10 on team B's 45 yard line. A84 runs a post pattern and is heading towards the end zone pursued by defensive back B21. The QB passes the ball. The Back Judge jogs backwards and arrives at the goal line moments before B21 intercepts the legal forward pass somewhere between the goal line and Team B's 1 yard line. B21's momentum carries him into his own end zone. Ruling?
Answer next issue...

Last week

Play: Which official has responsibility for ensuring that the game balls are made available before the game?
Answer: M-8-2-8. The Linejudge should ensure that the game balls are available, and make sure not to allow players to practice with them before the game.




Contact for details


March 29th (Sat)

BUCS Final

April 5th (Sat) & 6th (Sun)

BAFRA Annual Convention 2014

May 10th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

July 19th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

November 15th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

BAFRA Directors


David Parsons

General Secretary

Paul Sutton


Andrew Lovell


Richard Vernon


James Meredith


Pete Thom

Director without Portfolio #1

Martin Cockerill

Director without Portfolio #2

Steve Tonkinson

The opinions expressed in this Newsflash are those of the contributors, and not necessarily of BAFRA or its Directors.

All Incident Reports to be submitted via

Deadline for articles submitted by email ( is midnight Tuesday.

Editor: Dean Wright - Email: