What's in your bag Ref?

The primary functions of a Referee are to adjudicate during play, ensuring that the rules are followed precisely and to ensure that any situations that may arise are dealt with in a manner that is fair to both players. As long as these primary functions are performed then a secondary function is to assist the players, thus ensuring that matches are concluded without too many delays. To these ends a few items of equipment are necessary and a few more are desirable. A list of the things I have in my refereeing case, most of which I rarely, if ever use, are: -

A professional referee’s triangle.

These triangles are made so that when the bottom edge is in central contact with the top cushion, the Pyramid Spot locater is directly above the Spot so that the referee may be sure that the black ball is in its correct position, 12 ¾ inches from the face of the top cushion.

A ball marker.

It has the same dimensions as the diameter (52.5mm) and the radius (26.25mm) of a ball. This is the blue ball marker which may also have a central notch that can be used to determine if a ball is in baulk or not and which would mainly, if not solely, be used for billiards matches.

A large Perspex ball marker.

I mainly use this one when asked to clean a ball as it is much easier to handle than the smaller blue one.

A pair of white gloves.

I also carry a few spares for emergencies.

A pen, a white board marker and a soft leaded pencil.

I also have 2 or 3 more pens in my pocket as I’m always misplacing them during the course of a tournament. There is also a large assortment in the V.B.S.A. referees box. The use for the white board marker is obvious and the soft leaded pencil can be used to mark the correct location for the colours if the stick on black spot will not sit flush with the cloth and needs to be removed. (always consult venue management or the Tournament director before proceeding).

Black stick on spots.

It is not really recommended that all referees carry these and as above, the tournament director and/or the venue manager should always be consulted before replacing old ones if it is considered necessary.

Large laminated score board numbers.

These are now carried in the V.B.S.A. referees box but having your own set is still a good idea.

Blu Tak.

A set of micro scales.

A magnifying glass.

A brush and a pad.

A few plastic toes (the black plastic screw-in tips on the ends of the brass heads of rests and bridges).

A multi-purpose penknife.

A sheet of fine and a sheet of medium sandpaper.

Some spare tips.

Super glue in a sealed container to prevent damage from any spillages.

A couple of laminated strips of plain paper.

These can be fixed to the score board with Blu Tak and have the names of the players or teams written on them with the white board marker.

A spare bow tie.

Spare chalk.

A clean rag or polishing cloth.

A tape measure.

Of these last 14 items the only one I would really recommend for a referee to have is the clean rag or polishing cloth. The rest are mostly items that are now carried in the V.B.S.A. referees box which travels to all Victorian tournaments. However, if referees are engaged in tournaments such as pennant finals or the City of Melbourne event where they might be on their own or just with one other referee, it could be prudent to have some of those items, the scoreboard numbers, the blu tak and laminated strips e.g., in their kit.

The items essential to any referee are at least the ball marker with ball dimensions, a pair of white gloves, a large denomination coin and a pen.

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