By Nilanjan Datta,
AIFF Media Team
NEW DELH: As the first-ever exclusive Course for Women – the FIFA-MA Women’s Referees Course came to an end in New Delhi FIFA Instructor Krystyna Szokolai from Australia spoke to www.the-aiff.com about the Course, its significance, the life span of a Women Referee and much more. Besides being a FIFA Instructor for the last 8 years, Krstyna has also been a Professional Referee for 20 Years and a FIFA Referee for 10 years. EXCERPTS:
What has been your observation?
There are some who as per my assessment are good enough to officiate at the AFC level. There’s always a scope for improvement and I keep this saying this every time as one should always target to officiate at the FIFA level. Women’s Refereeing has a huge scope for growth in India. With the introduction of the Women’s League in 2016, it will take that giant step which is much needed.
What did you stress on in the Course?
The Course couldn’t be at par with what is taught, for example, in Japan. The topics were a bit different. We had theoretical sessions as much we had practical sessions. Topics like handball, fouls, misconduct, off-sides, positioning, etc were stressed upon. In the practical sessions, emphasis was paid on teamwork – the teamwork between the four Officials, the Referee, the two Assistant Referees and the fourth Official. It’s all about getting the right decision.
Were the girls interactive? Did they ask questions?
O yeah, they were. They asked a lot of questions. Some of them asked in the classroom itself while some wanted one on one sessions. Their involvement in the group sessions where they shared their opinions, knowledge, and experiences and communicated with one another was also very encouraging. It’s all about the clarity which they ought to achieve through the situations and the clips which were shown to them.
How much significant was the Course?
Life for a Women Referee is much difficult than a Men Referee. The sociological barrier which women have to fight with, not only in India but in the entire World, is more than what Men have to face. A Women needs to take care of her family, balance Refereeing with family life and hence, the lifespan is much less. That’s where I need to applaud and thank All India Football Federation for being so proactive and organising this Course exclusively for Women Referees. It’s such a historical occasion for the girls. It’s now up to the girls to realize and take charge. It’s up to them to feel how badly they want this Course to change their lives.