AFLUA Life member, Don Casey has just seen his 14 year, labour of love, come to fruition with the publication of his first book, “Blood in their Boots.” The name of the book was taken from the last line of the umpires theme song “……..and they will umpire with blood in their boots.”

Don, interviewed every living field umpire who umpired a grand final between 1897 and 2016. He was the conduit for putting “their story” into print. Don’s first interview was with Jack McMurray Jnr some 14 years ago and his last was field umpire Scott Jeffery who officiated in the 2016 grand final.

Don wanted to know about what got these special men into football and then umpiring. He wanted to know what made them tick and how they focused on becoming the best. Don was in that bracket where he saw the early grand final umpires as a young man growing up. He then umpired with the Deller’s, Smith’s, Robinson’s and Sutcliffe’s. More over, Don then coached the Kennedy’s, McLaren’s, Goldspink’s when they were young umpires starting their trade. He has then watched the recent crop from his privileged position in the lounge room.

We asked Don what he believed the common denominator was with those very successful umpires and he was very quick to point out it was their determination to succeed above all else. Their ability to focus on what was required and to just get the job done.

The AFLUA is proud to support Don and is selling the books through our online store for $20 plus postage or handling. You can always ring Julia in the office and arrange a time to come in and pick up the book if you wish.

It’s a great read and we highly recommend it to our members and all aspiring umpires.

Don has also listed every boundary and goal umpire who officiated in a grand final for completeness.

See Don’s interview on our website as we launch the book to the public.


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