11 Sep 2014

Sport: New Oceania Football referees boss keen to raise standards

10:47 am on 11 September 2014

Oceania Football referees boss Mark Hester is hoping to lift the standard of officials in the region.

The FIFA referee instructor began his new role as OFC Referee Development Officer last month and says he wants to develop an education structure for officials to help compare performance throughout the Pacific.

He says the Oceania Confederation is spread out and resources are limited in some countries so it's important to make the most of what is available.

"One of the challenges within Oceania is that football is obviously not the major sport and it has to compete with other sports. The amount of football is not there as well so if you're in Europe. for example, they play for ten months a year where often a national league within Oceania might last four or five months so the opportunity to referee on a consistent basis is not there, which can limit the practice that is required."

Mark Hester says there is always room for more referees in football for anyone keen to remain in the game or take up the whistle.