Auckland Football Federation match officials made a big impact at the Kanga Cup in Canberra, Australia.
The connection between Auckland Football and the Kanga Cup began when current AFF Referee Development Officer Paul Smith made a visit to the tournament on behalf of New Zealand Football in 2007.
Smith then made a personal visit in 2008 after which Auckland Football soon took over sending referees and coaches as part of their development program.
Match officials at the Kanga Cup get the experience of being able to live the life of a professional official for a week and are involved in three to four matches per day as both a referee and assistant referee.
The reward for top performances in the group stages is potential control of finals matches and 2017 was no different.
“The AFF contingent did extremely well with all four being appointed to the Grand Finals.
“Riley Greenbury was given the main boys U-18 final as a referee,” Smith told www.aucklandfootball.org.nz.
Brandon Day – Video
Competition referee coach coordinator Andrew Higginson believes the Kanga Cup is enriched by the presence of match officials from Auckland Football.
“We have been fortunate to have New Zealand referees and coaches from Auckland Football Federation participating in the Kanga Cup since 2007.
“This involvement is critical not only from a referee numbers perspective but more importantly, for the exchange of ideas and refereeing practices between our two countries and the development opportunity for our young referees.
“It has also led to my colleague Mark Young and me travelling to New Zealand to referee at the World Masters Games to continue the exchange opportunity.
“AFF and New Zealand referees in general come with a very good reputation to the Kanga Cup and perform at a high level, including obtaining some of the highest finals appointments.
“They contribute positively to all aspects of Academy life and many long term friendships have developed from this involvement,” Higginson said.
Riley Greenbury – Video
Auckland Football sent eight delegates to the Kanga Cup with Salman Ali, Cameron Dickson-Hards, Greenbury and Alan Tobin among the contingent.
Brandon Day, David Brooke, Jeremy Ferguson and Paul Smith also attended.
The Kanga Cup takes place in Canberra annually during the month of July.
To learn more about the Kanga Cup please click here.
Kanga Cup 2017
Auckland Football Federation