The Badminton World Federation confirmed the appointment of three Australia Line Judges to its 2021-2024 technical official cycle, for Pauline Eldred and Ian Fernandez it will be their first appointment onto the BWF international rotation while Shevaun Moody will have her current appointment extended.
Badminton Australia caught up with the two new officials to learn more about how they came to their appointments, why they love officiating and to share advice for those who are considering becoming Technical Officials.
BA: Pauline, thanks for your time! Can you detail your progression from 0 to hero!?
Pauline: My journey in line judging started in 2016 when Queensland Badminton Association began searching for line judges to gain experience with a goal to being a Technical Official at the 2018 Commonwealth Games at the Gold Coast!
BA: And so did you head out into the community and start building that experience?
Pauline: Yes, and actually a bit more, so after some practice at local competitions, it was time to line judge at national and international events including the Australian Badminton Open in 2016 and then 2017 Sudirman Cup
BA: And no doubt an appointment to the Commonwealth Games?
Pauline: Yep exactly, so soon after that I was appointed as a Technical Official for the 2018 Comm Games which was really exciting and also a massive milestone reached. It was such a great experience to be a part of such an important event alongside badminton friends. My daughter Sally was also a line judge at the tournament and had been on the same journey so it was a highlight we both shared which I will always cherish. The tournament spanned the whole of the Games so there was definitely lots of opportunity to watch some high-quality badminton in between line judging stints!
BA: What tournaments have you completed to round out till now?
Pauline: So, from late 2018 to 2020 I have been line judging at Oceania Championships which is great because I get to see a variety of disciplines including Juniors and Para Badminton too.
BA: Sounds like you’ve had some great experiences so far! Can you remember any of your earlier tournaments?
Pauline: The first tournament I was a line judge was at the 2016 Xiamenair Australian Badminton Open in Sydney. I learnt a lot from this tournament particularly all the protocols that need to be followed and professionalism in officiating because it may seem like an easy job at first but there is a lot of detail involved. Of course, lots of anecdotes and guidance from experienced line judges and umpires at the event was very beneficial too.
BA: For anyone reading this thinking about getting involved do you have any advice or tips?
Pauline: I think if you really enjoy badminton and want to take your interest to another level, then line judging is a great way to do that. Often there is a mix of new and experienced line judges at tournaments so it’s a way to meet other badminton members as well as see the best players and high-quality matches…but of course keeping eyes on the lines when the shuttle is coming your way!
Matt Simpson, participation and digital coordinator, was lucky enough to speak with Ian via Zoom and speak to him about his progression and some of his favourite memories. Ian spoke about his experience, his journey officiating at more than 5 Australian Badminton Open’s and how he’s 5-0 against some of the top player challengers in the world and 21-0 for calls overall! Watch Ian speak here!
Shevaun has been added to the 2021-2024 cycle that will include her first appearance at an Olympic and Paralympic Games in 2021 Tokyo. She has been a line judge at prestigious badminton events as part of her last rotation including the BWF Thomas and Uber Cup Finals in 2018, Bangkok, Thailand. Shevaun also attended the Pacific Games last year (2019) in Samoa and has lent her keen eyes too many other National and International tournaments through her last four years. We’re very excited to see her complete this next rotation and wish her the best of luck!
Photo Credit: Feature Image (Badminton Photo)
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