The AFL has announced the last of its list changes for 2016 with the rookie field umpire’s squad announced early this week.
VFL umpires, Andrew Talbot (3 years on the rookie panel) and Michael Curtis (1 year) were replaced by first year rookie Daniel Butcher, player to pathway umpire, Andre Gianfagna and previously listed AFL umpire Shane Stewart.
In Queensland, long time servant of the game, Brett Kronk has retired from football, ending his quest to becoming an AFL umpire. Brett yesterday said, “I have loved every minute of my journey over many years but carrying injuries over this season has taken its toll.” Fellow 2015 rookie, James Waldorf will continue in that position again in 2016 and colleague, Alex Whetton comes onto the list for the first time.
Liam Rowe will enter his third season as a rookie in NSW but his 2015 colleague, Aaron Langdon has decided to put his craft to the test in Victoria and is looking to gain a place on the VFL list in 2016. Aaron has recently completed his university studies and sees the time right to make the change. Aaron has been replaced by NEAFL field umpire, Cameron Barr.
Leigh Haussen regains his spot on the rookie list following a hiatus in 2015. Leigh had another stellar season in the SANFL umpiring his fourth senior grand final in five years. Rowan Hundertmark gets another opportunity but Toby Medlin (1 year) will not hold a rookie contract in 2016.
There are no changes to the rookies in WA. Matt Adams (3 years) and Nathan Williamson (1 year) will again hold those positions.
Matt Clarke who keeps racking up grand finals in Tasmania has not been offered a rookie spot in 2016 following his previous 2 seasons in the role.