by Ian Marshall, ITTF Publications Editor
Principally they have been judging the competency of those who attended the Advanced Umpires Training Course (AUT) and sat the Advanced Rules Examination (ARE) on Saturday 25th November; overall; there were 11 students from throughout the world present.
An intense day; matters conducted by Katja Band and Hans-Peter Woerner, the itinerary started at 8.00 am and did not conclude until 6.00pm.
“We were very well received here in Riva del Garda, overall for everybody I think it was a good experience.” Katja Band
Theory work over, the results of the examination not divulged, it was down to action in the two playing hall.
Overall each umpire was subject to a maximum of “meets”; basically they have to achieve a level of “very good evaluations” umpiring to the required standard; for those who succeed, having passed the Advanced Rules Examination and “met expectations”, they become Blue Badge in Progress Umpires.
The process concluded, overall five members of the group passed; the results being announced on Saturday 2nd December.
“We had a very positive response from all the coaches; those who did not reach the necessary level, all showed a great deal of interest. I think we were well prepared and we delivered a good course.” Hans-Peter Woerner
Now, they must “meet expectations” on a total of four assessments from at least two evaluators; the “meets” at the 2017 ITTF World Junior Championships count. After the first very good evaluation, a candidate has seven attempts in which to achieve the same level.
“I learned new things on the course, it enabled me to get up-to-date with items. The course was well structured, Katja and Hans-Peter have a great deal knowledge; they explained everything very clearly. The “knotty problems” part was really, it brought people out, everyone could join in.” Brian Jackson (Course Member)
One more step, the final step is an oral examination in English which they must pass; then they are official Blue Badge Umpires.