Simon Meredith was adjudged the 2022 All-Australian Field Umpire at last Wednesday’s (August 24, 2022) awards function at Melbourne’s Centrepiece.
The 437-AFL game veteran’s maiden All-Australian blazer comes on the back of a strong home and away season this time around, where he has officiated in all 23 matches of the 2022 AFL competition so far.
Simon commenced his umpiring career with the MSFJL and VAFA in 1989, and made his AFL debut in 2004. He has six AFL Grand Finals to his name, and took charge of the 2003 VFL Grand Final.
Playing down any added pressure that might come with this exclusive All-Australian territory, Simon highlighted that the focus has been on maintaining consistency.
He said, “It’s a nice recognition of umpiring well. It’s something great to look back on when the career’s done, and I’ll look back on [it] with great affection.
“It’s having consistency in everything you do, whether it’s your preparation, your rehab, your diet and nutrition; and then on-field consistency in performance – doing that at a high level over and over. That gets you to where you need to be at the end of the year.”
Taking things in stride has served Simon well on his way to the elite level of umpiring.
He said, “It’s more about not having too rigid guidelines – so that when things happen, it doesn’t faze you. You can go with it and not worry about it, and enjoy the season and each game as it’s coming along.
“If you keep doing the things you have been doing well, and keep being consistent around it all, then these are nice things that happen.”
With an umpiring career spanning so many years and the accolades that have come with it, Simon said, “You cannot do it without your family’s support.” He further drew attention to the impact that his umpiring colleagues and coaches have had over the years, helping him enjoy the game and develop his umpiring craft on the whole.
Congratulations, Simon, on another massive milestone, and we wish you continued success going forward.
# To view the full list of All-Australian Field Umpires, please visit https://aflua.com.au/awards/all-australian-umpires/
# Featured image: Simon Meredith during the 2021 AFL Round 12 match (Fremantle Dockers v. Western Bulldogs at Optus Stadium in Perth, Australia). (Photo by Daniel Carson/AFL Photos)