The AFL umpiring department has selected six first time finals umpires to take to the field over this weekend.
Goal umpire, Brodie Kenny-Bell has created a 20 year record for a goal umpire by being selected in a final in his first year on the list.
According to our statistician, David Flegg, Brodie becomes the 43rd umpire (6th goal umpire) since 1931, where an independent board and an assessment process was introduced to be appointed in his first season. The last goal umpire selected to umpire a final in his first year was Neil O’Brien in 1995. *See the table below of umpires who achieved a final in their first year on the list since 1931
Brendan Hosking is the only field umpire making his debut. Hosking has umpired 20 games this season taking his career total to 60. He joins Jeff Dalgleish, Scott Jeffery and Shane McInerney who return to the finals panel after missing finals last season.
Boundary umpire Chris Bull (97 games), along with Shane Thiele, (130 games), Chris Esler (83 games) and Matthew Jenkinson (83 games) all debut this weekend.
There are always tough stories to be told come finals selection but spare a thought for boundary umpire Drew Kowalski and Mark Thomson who both had to pull out injured on the eve of round 23. Rumour has it that both boys were a good chance for finals selection.