The Sutherland District Basketball Association along with its Referee coordinator Leanne Walsh are excited to provide members with a half year update on the refereeing program at the club.

By The Numbers:

In total we have 121 active senior and junior referees across the club this is up 50% from 2022.  Some of the referee program highlights include at the beginning of Term 2, 2023 we saw an intake of 15 new referees being our largest intake ever and currently we have 23 green shirt referees with another 15 due to start at the beginning of term 3 2023.


We have recruited referees from all grades and divisions from our domestic competitions. By creating a fun environment, others see their refereeing friends having fun and making some extra $$. We have also provided opportunity to several of our black and white referees to debut as representative referees in 2023 hence providing opportunity in our elite competitions for referees to grow their skill base.


We have created a fun and welcoming environment and made refereeing more than an afterthought. We are more visible with the number of referees on court, as well as referee trainers working actively to educate and improve our referees.  We have also implemented a recognition program called referee of the month where each month for the referee that has shown promise, great work ethic and has worked hard on their refereeing they are awarded this accolade.


We clarified the pathways and have made conscious efforts to move the referees through these pathways to higher grades, increasing their skills, knowledge and confidence along the way.

Benefits of refereeing:

  • Fun – being a part of the game that we love and enjoy.
  • Friendships: creates and sustains friendships.
  • Keep Fit:  will keep you fit both physically and mentally.
  • Opportunities for all: open to everyone; you just need to be ready to have fun.
  • Income:  allows you to get to do something you love and get paid for it.
  • Life Skills: Officiating requires a unique skill set, communication skills, time. management, dedication and teamwork.

Sharks General Manager Adrian Dark said “I am beyond ecstatic with the work Leanne and her team of dedicated referee trainers and supervisors are doing to create an environment where referees are actively learning, having fun, making new friends and we can see by the increasing numbers that more and more people are picking up the whistle and wanting to referee which is fantastic”.

“We still have work to do, we are continuing to work closely with referees, players, parents about maintaining an environment for children and adults to enjoy refereeing without abuse or harassment, I’m happy to say that 2023 has seen a lot more positivity from our basketball community in terms of abiding by the zero tolerance and anti-abuse framework we have here at Sutherland basketball. I feel this is a huge factor as to why our refereeing program is continuing to see this positive growth”.

If your interested in becoming a referee you can do so by emailing or call 02 95421999 and talk with referee coordinator Leanne Walsh.