Community and Commitment Through Referee Paul Rock's Eyes

March 03, 2024

Mullingar Rugby Club Celebrates Community and Commitment Through Referee Paul Rock's Eyes

Mullingar Rugby Club's own Paul Rock, serving as both a referee and coordinator, shares insights into his journey since 2008, underlining the vibrant community and the evolving role of a rugby referee. Rock's career highlights extend beyond the pitch's excitement, focusing on the deep-rooted friendships and the strong sense of community within the club. "Finals are significant," Paul admits, "but the camaraderie and the connections I've made here truly stand out."

Despite the increasing popularity of rugby in the local area, which has brought about more vocal supporters, Paul views this change positively. "It shows the game's growth and the passion of our community," he says, reflecting on the shifting dynamics and the impact on referees. This heightened enthusiasm, according to Paul, is a testament to rugby's expanding reach.

Paul's unique perspective on the game, honed over years of experience, has him watching matches differently from most. "I find myself focusing on the referee, anticipating their decisions," he reveals, highlighting a professional curiosity and dedication to his role.

Earlier in his career, the MRFC referee appreciated officiating games outside Mullingar for the undivided focus it allowed him. However, as time passed, local ties have become less of a distraction, allowing him to fully immerse in the game, irrespective of the location.

The call for new referees is a constant at Mullingar Rugby Club, with Paul emphasising the role's benefits. "It's not just about staying physically active; it's about being part of something larger, the friendships you form here last a lifetime," he encourages.

Paul's commitment to excellence extends to continuous training, including participation in national programmes and a pioneering mentoring scheme now adopted nationally. This dedication to improvement and professional development underscores the club's forward-thinking approach. Although currently not utilising video analysis, it's a tool Rock believes could further enhance referees' performance evaluation in the future.

Paul Rock's journey is a testament to the enduring spirit and camaraderie of Mullingar Rugby Club, spotlighting the essential role referees play in the sport's fabric. His story encourages others to join, contribute, and thrive within the rugby community, underlining the blend of fitness, friendship, and personal growth that officiating offers.

share on entry