Issue 03/17                                                                                9th February 2017

BAFRA Newsflash


The Sapphire Series is the national championship for women’s contact football. The series, which runs from February to April, sees teams compete across a number of tournaments in both 5 v 5 and 7 v 7 formats. The series runs with tournament-style game days at which 4 -5 teams will be present. There will be 3 tournament dates with 4 regional based tournaments taking part on each of these, so a total of 12 tournament events followed by Finals event in April.  Teams play two games each per day and tournaments are expected to last around three to three and a half hours. Officials can expect to officiate 2-3 games, all lasting between 45-60 minutes. Most events will start first games at 13:00 and will be finished by 16:30 latest. These are all Saturday events.

Dates, formats, times and venues for the first series of tournaments are as follows:

Saturday 25th February:

Birmingham, Edinburgh        7 v 7

Portsmouth, Sandwell         5 v 5

Future tournaments will be held on the following dates:

11th March - Derby (7 v 7), Manchester (7 v 7) Peterborough (5 v 5)

25th March & 15th April - Location unknown

We will put all these events onto Arbiter and assign officials based on their availability and proximity to an event.  The first series of events is on 25th February and officials who have worked this format in 2016 are welcome to contact us if they wish to work at a specific tournament. Officials will be paid a game fee for these assignments direct through BAFA/BAFRA. However if you do not wish to be considered for this format of the game then let us know.  It is hoped that mentors will be available at some of these events to advise and assist official who are new to this form of the sport. BAFRA are looking to offer training and mentoring at some of these events to support officials who may be new to the format or who wish to develop their expertise further. It is envisaged that this will take the form of some off field training before the tournament starts followed by on-field observation and feedback during the games. If this is something you would be interested in taking advantage of, please let us know.

There is very likely to be an event near you so please try to cover at least one of them. It will be a great learning experience for newer officials and a valuable contribution by all BAFRA officials to the development of BAFA's women's football programme.

Richard Vernon 


As per our Regulations, four Directors are due to stand down at this year’s AGM. They are: the Director of Finance, the Director of Operations, the Director of Recruitment and the Director without Portfolio #2. Two of these have indicated that they will be seeking re-election at the AGM. These are the Director of Operations and the Director without Portfolio #2. The other two, the Directors of Finance and Recruitment, have indicated that they will be standing down at the expiry of their terms of office.

By the time you read this, all qualified members should have received nomination papers with full instructions of how to nominate and the timescales. I will keep members informed via Newsflash of nominations as I receive them.

The Directors encourage members to put themselves forward for all of the above posts. If members require details of any of the four posts, or wish to discuss anything about the responsibilities involved, they should feel free to contact me or, if they prefer, another Director for further information.

Accompanying the nomination papers, qualified members will also have received a form for proposing resolutions to the AGM. Please note that such resolutions should normally relate to The Articles of Association, Memorandum of Association or Regulations of the Company (the full text of which may be found in the Member’s Handbook on the website) and not to operational matters. All members will have the opportunity to put questions to the directors singly or collectively about their responsibilities at the AGM and such questions should not be submitted on this form.

Paul Sutton 


Please add Sunderland and East London to list of prepaid teams.  Since January I have only received one cheque for game fees. If YOU have sent one please check the address you used. It should be 25 Daffodil Close, Haslingden, Rossendale, BB4 6DG.  If you have sent payment other than electronically, then email me.  Also please change details on invoices you give to teams.

Charlie Dean Young 









New this week

Nicholas Wilson


Portsmouth Destroyers



On the opening KO of the game, the player launched himself in an upward motion contacting the ball carrier in the head, with the crown of his helmet.

12/02/17 v Surrey Stingers

Previous weeks - none





New this week

City Sentinels

Very faint lines across entire surface, was able to see along key lines (sideline, goal line, end line) but other areas were quite worn before the game and became worse during play. Chain set required repair before start of game. City only had 2 legal balls of a good enough standard, UCL supplied the 3rd which we used for the game. Padding on one post came away several times, so game suspended to allow home management to make a repair using tape to hold it in place.

Phil Clarke #262

12/02/17 v KCL Regents

Teeside Cougars

Game played on 4G with other sport marking and no posts. Pitch booked until 1300 with soccer match. KO delayed 30 minutes to allow player warm ups. Brief stoppage in play with young kids playing near field.

Daniel Johnston #347


Napier Knights

90 yard field with team area marked out with cones. Game kicked off 10 minutes late while waiting for minimum medical cover to be meet. Cover had been arranged but gone to the wrong venue and then gotten stuck in roadworks

Henry Richardson #25


Solent Redhawks

No limit lines, the plane of the goal posts is beyond the end line.

Viktor Janvari #63


Lincoln Colonials

Faint field markings. Goal posts are uprights tied to soccer goals. End line too close to perimeter of field so used soccer goal line as endline, this reduced end zones to eight yards. Officials changing room cramped and full of lost property

Brian Yates #29

12/02/17 v Huddersfield Hawks

Plymouth Blitz

Goals were white pipes strapped to soccer goal posts. Field markings faint in sunlight.

Euan Paterson #165

19/02/17 v Tarannau Aberystwyth

Bath Killer Bees

Coaching box and players box were set a long way back from the sideline. No limit lines. Changing rooms shared with other officials from other sports.

Pete Parsons #321

12/02/17 v Birmingham Lions

Sheffield Hallam Warriors

80 yard field with 10 yard end zones (after we moved the goal line to the five yard line). No limit lines, no coach or player areas marked.

Dan Holt #371

12/02/19 v UCLan Rams

Cardiff Cobras

Field markings had become rather faint. Limit lines were too close to the sidelines, team areas were marked too small (between the 30 yard lines) and had no separate players area. The down box was particularly short (approximately 3' tall).

Amir Brooks #593

12/02/17 v Oxford Lancers

UCLan Rams

Field was marked in yellow and was barely visible by the end of the game. No team or coach areas marked.

Stuart Alger #179


Bangor Muddogs

Game played at Liverpool’s home field.No team area or coaches boxes marked, but there are other markings which can be used as a guide. No 3 yard marks.

John Roberts #145

19/02/17 v Bradford Bears

Outstanding items from previous weeks

Lancaster Bombers

Pitch only 80 yards long no team area markings.  Pitch marked in blue with other sport marking on the field.

Tony Newsham #302

26/02/17 v York Centurions

Leicester Longhorns

No team areas marked. Game suspended for 11\4 hours with 9 minutes left in 3rd quarter due to serious neck injury sustained by a DMU player necessitating air ambulance. Game reduced to ten minute quarters.

Brian Yates #29

12/02/17 v Coventry Jets

Hertfordshire Hurricanes

No medical coverage was forthcoming so game abandoned after waiting 1 hour despite attempts by the home team to secure adequate coverage.

Brian Yates #29

26/02/17 v Birmingham Lions

QMUL Vipers

Well marked 90-yard field in blue with other sport markings in white. No limit lines or numbers but marks at 9-yard depth. No team areas, although another sport line approximated as a team area line. Goal at one end of the field was judged too close to a main road with inadequate fencing protection, so all offensive plays were played toward the opposite goal.

Tim Ockendon #481

19/02/17 v Essex Blades

Southampton Stags

No limit lines, the plane of the goal posts is beyond the end line. One ball person changed during the first half.

Peter Parsons #321

12/02/17 v Brunel Burners

Reading Knights

After multiple delays to the arrival of the booked medical cover, the game kicked off late with medical cover sourced through the visiting team's contacts and was shortened to 8 minute quarters. The changing rooms were not lockable.

Peter Parsons #321

19/02/17 v Brighton Tsunami

Sheffield Sabres

80 yard field marked in red. Team areas not marked.

Jed Brookes-Lewis

19/02/17 v Leeds Carnegie

Liverpool Raptors

Field marked with NFL narrow hash-marks, no coaching boxes and team areas.

Richard Whitby #136

12/02/17 v Leeds Gryphons

Royal Holloway Bears

The field is 100 yards long with proper football goalposts, but the field surface is very deep in wet conditions, as we had today. Team area markings were non-existent and we had problems getting enough helpers for the chain crew and ball persons. Changing room is a closable room inside the men's changing rooms, so it may not be fully proper with ladies on the crew.

Viktor Janvari #63

26/02/17 v Imperial Immortals

Derby Braves

Team areas marked with cones. Only one goal so all drives were toward one end

Brian Yates #29

12/02/17 v Durham Saints

Liverpool Raptors

With 1.30 left in the 3rd quarter, Chester decided they could not continue following an injury to one of their players due to the risk of further injury to other players. No team areas marked.

Stuart Alger #179

12/02/17 v Leeds Gryphons

Sunderland Spartans

Game played at Druid Park, Abandoned with 10:16 remaining in the 4th quarter, due to lack of lighting/visibility, floodlights were used, but they didn't provide adequate lighting to the field.

Liam Wooton 478

12/02/17 v Newcastle Raiders

Sussex Saxons

No limit lines marked - clash of other field markings also in white - field markings difficult to see on occasions - grass a little long. Changing room too small for 4 people.

12/02/17 v Brighton Tsunami

Kingston Cougars

No coaching box, team area or limit lines. One stake required repair after a player collided with it.

Peter Parsons #321

12/02/17 v Hertfordshire Hurricanes

Hull Sharks

No limit lines, no nine yard marks, no 3 yard marks. Delay for about 6 minutes in 4th quarter due to injury.

Dan Holt #371

19/02/16 v Newcastle Raiders

LJM Fury

No 3 yard marks. No coaches or players boxes marked, although there are other markings that can be used as approximate lines.

John Roberts #145

19/02/17 v Nottingham Outlaws

Lincoln Colonials

Goals were soccer goals with extended uprights. Field markings faint. No team areas marked. Changing room was cramped, dirty and full of old lost property

Brian Yates #29

05/02/17 v DMU Falcons

Kent Falcons

90-yard field marked in red with other sport markings in white, yellow and blue. No limit lines, numbers or 9-yard marks. Team areas marked with cones. Inbounds lines at incorrect depth.

Tim Ockendon #481

12/02/17 v Royal Holloway Bears

Swansea Titans

The field was generally well marked out, but heavy rain before and during the game resulted in the lines being rather faint. No 9-yard marks, limit lines or separate player areas.

Amir Brooks #593

19/02/17 v Hertfordshire Hurricanes

Canterbury Chargers

Well marked 90-yard field with 8-yard end zones, marked in blue with other sport markings in yellow & white. Missing limit lines, numbers & 9-yard marks with coaching line at incorrect depth. Game balls presented were all under-inflated but this was rectified by game management prior to kickoff.

Tim Ockendon #481

26/02/17 v UEL



New this week

Play:  1st and 10 at Team B’s 40-yard line.  A12 throws a forward pass to airborne receiver A90 who is at Team B’s 35-yard line. A90 controls the ball and, seeing he is about to land out of bounds, while still airborne he throws the ball forward to A80 who catches the ball at Team B’s 30-yard line where A80 is downed.  Ruling?


Last week

Play:  4th and 5 on the Team A 35 yard line. With time running out in the 2nd quarter quarterback A6 scrambles out wide and runs beyond the line of scrimmage to the Team A 38 yard line, where he throws a forward pass which is completed to eligible receiver A81 who is downed on the Team B40 yard line. Time in the first half expires during the play.

Ruling:  Illegal forward pass by A6.  The penalty is 5 yards from the spot of the foul and loss of down (7-3-2-a).  If time had not expired in the quarter, Team B would have had taken the ball at the A33 yard line - 1st and 10.  However, the period is not extended if a penalty enforcement includes loss of down (3-2-3-a-1).  The period is over and it's half time.  See AR 3-2-3-VIII.


New this week

Game Situation: Team A punt from midfield.  Team B line up with two punt returners, B23 is on the the Head Linesman's side of the field while B80 is on the Linejudge's side of the field.  The punted ball is caught by B23 and he begins to run upfield with it.  On a 5 man crew, how should the officials work together to ensure that the forward progress of the punt returner is covered?

Answer next issue...

Last week

Play: 1st and goal at the B2, team A run a quarterback sneak.  The umpire sees the ball-carrier clearly break the plane of the goal line before falling down, however both wing officials' views are obscured by other players.  How should the umpire communicate that a touchdown has been scored?

Answer: M-10-5-c & M-10-5-d.  The umpire should establish eye-contact with the wing officials and give the 'double thumbs up' signal (sup25) to indicate a touchdown.  It is convention that the umpire never give a touchdown signal on a normal scrimmage down, although he may if the wingman has fallen over or is otherwise well out of position.




Contact for details


February 18th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

April 1st & 2nd (Sat / Sun)

BAFRA Convention Weekend

April 1st (Sat)


May 6th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

July 22nd (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

November 18th (Sat)

BAFRA Board Meeting

BAFRA Directors


David Parsons

General Secretary

Paul Sutton


Charlie Dean Young


Richard Vernon


James Meredith


Pete Thom

Director without Portfolio #1

Peter Parsons

Director without Portfolio #2

Steve Tonkinson

The opinions expressed in this Newsflash are those of the contributors, and not necessarily of BAFRA or its Directors.

All Incident Reports to be submitted via

Deadline for articles submitted by email ( is midnight Tuesday.

Editor: Dean Wright - Email:

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