Issue 9
Monday, 05 November 2018
Charles Darwin University
Sports and Recreation student and netball umpire Shari Lesiak
Sports and Recreation student and netball umpire Shari Lesiak

Umpire Shari at top of her game

By Patrick Nelson

While the Alice Springs Masters Games is renowned for its good fun and healthy competition, its success can be largely attributed to the many volunteers working behind the scenes.

Among some 800 volunteers who helped run the 36 sports during the just finished week-long event was Shari Lesiak, an OLSH College student who also is enrolled in the Certificate II in Sport and Recreation at Charles Darwin University.

Shari provided administrative support and officiated as an umpire in netball, her favourite sport.

“I helped with the draw, with scoring and with the umpires’ roster, as well as umpiring in nine games,” said Shari, an accredited C-badge netball umpire.

It was an eye-opening experience for the locally born and educated sports enthusiast who said the program contained regular “competitive games”, as well as “friendly games” for those more focused on participation and fun.

She said the level of sportsmanship was high, and the games were kept in good order, except for one incident in a “friendly game” where paradoxically a disagreement arose between two players.

“It was frustrating at the time because it interfered with the game,” she said.

Her involvement in the Games will contribute towards her Certificate, which Sport and Recreation Trainer Bill Adams said required students to plan or conduct a program as one of the elective units.

Shari enrolled in the one-year course at the start of Semester 1 this year.

“I’ve learnt about workplace health and safety, how to coach, how to set out training schedules and about the different rules in AFL, rugby, basketball and netball,” she said.

The course has helped expand Shari’s knowledge of a sport in which she is well immersed. Not only does Shari serve as an umpire with the Alice Springs Netball Association, she also plays in an under-15s competition and coaches one of the junior teams.