Veteran field umpire, Chris Kamolins has called stumps on his 207-game career to take up a role as General Manager Fisher and Paykel Healthcare in India. Speaking with Chris over the past few days he reflected fondly on his footy involvement but said, “this was too good an offer to refuse and it’s time to put my family and my future career first.”
“Kamo” as he is affectionately known by the group, commenced his umpiring in the then Diamond Valley Football League in 1990. Kamo came onto the VFL panel, umpiring the 2002 TAC Cup Grand Final and followed it up with the 2003 VFL Reserve Grade Grand Final. He also umpired in the under 18 National Championships in 2003.
Following the 2004 VFL Senior Grand Final, Kamo was appointed to the AFL senior panel in 2005.
While his AFL career went from strength to strength on field, he had no luck at the pointy end of seasons. In 2012 he was concussed in the last home and away game and in 2015 he finished the season prematurely with a calf injury. In 2016 he was finally rewarded with his first and only AFL final.
Kamo became just as renowned for his off-field work. His three years on the AFLUA executive, including his 2015 presidency saw the association go to the next level of professionalism with an internal review that led to the current structure. Who could forget those “Silly Sunday’s” that really saw Kamo come to the fore.
Kamo‘s work was recognised by his peers when he was voted by them as the best field umpire winning the Bishop Shield in 2013. No higher accolade can be given to a running umpire. Kamo was inducted as an AFLUA life member in 2014.
His three years in Brisbane (2010-2012) when Fisher and Paykel Healthcare made him Sales Manager of Queensland certainly saw him bring a level of professionalism that they hadn’t seen and he nurtured three young Queenslanders, Ben Ryan, Andrew Stephens and Mathew McKenzie to AFL contracts.
So what are we really going to miss when Kamo heads overseas? That ‘never say die’ attitude on and off the track, a willingness to help anyone and everyone achieve their goals, a mature perspective of association affairs and to cap it off training and functions will now be a “shirts stay on affair!
We wish Kamo and his family all the best as they begin the next phase of their lives in India.