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Gavin Badger: there was no falling out

After officiating in 411 games, the very popular Gavin Badger has hung up the whistle after he was not offered a contract for 2021.
The decision has been seen as controversial by some, but Badger insists there was no falling out with the refereeing ranks.

“I just wasn’t part of the top 8 referees. The difference between refereeing and players is that we’ve only got one team to go to. If the coach doesn’t like your style, which happens, you have nowhere else to go. Unfortunately for me, the coaching staff at the moment think there are other people better than me to do the job. That’s sport and I accept that. I don’t agree with it but that’s what happens.”

He offered great insight into the different types of referees, claiming some are manufactured, and some more natural.

“…you’ve got a ref’s coach who likes a certain style, and for the last 6 or 7 years, officiating has been more of that ‘let’s stay in a box and you can’t get into trouble’ which doesn’t allow you to show your personality.”

With regards to the move back to one referee, Badger still prefers the two-referee model. “Having another person from a different angle….just from pure decision making purposes, having another person out there helps”.

Whilst disappointed he didn’t get to referee for one final time, particularly under the new 6-again rules, “the Badge” was humbled by the raft of messages that came in from players, friends and associates.

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