Marc Henning has over 10 years of experience with netball umpiring under his belt and is now expanding on his umpiring duties by taking on the role of a mentor. Having recently taken part in the Northern Territory Netball Championships, he had the opportunity to impart his knowledge and skills onto a group of young and eager umpires.
The Northern Territory Netball Championships are held on an annual basis and provide underage players a pathway to build on their skills within the sport. There the skills of NT’s finest athletes are on display as they compete on behalf of their local member association.
This year’s championships were held in Alice Springs from the 22nd to the 24th of September with representatives from five divisions, each with 2 teams or more, and roughly 12 athletes on each side.
Henning spoke with umpires that had come from all over the Northern Territory and coached them through ways to improve on their performances, and challenge them throughout the championships.
Henning’s Suncorp Super Netball commitments make it difficult for him to get more involved in mentoring or umpire coaching; “this is really disappointing as I really enjoy assisting other umpires to develop their skills and realise their potential.”
“It was fantastic to meet 20 NT umpires who were all extremely eager to learn… the sense of community at the NT Championships was unmatched to any other I’ve been involved in.”
Prior to starting his umpiring career back in 2002, Henning never thought to participate in netball besides an odd game here and there with friends. It wasn’t until his friend Maureen Lambert, an A Grade Umpire, suggested he consider becoming one.
She coached him through all there is to know about umpiring and “has continued to be a fantastic mentor and friend (to him).”
Only having limited time in Alice Springs, to give the aspiring umpires assistance with improving their skills, Henning hoped to leave even just a small impact on them. For him the most rewarding experience was the huge sense of community at the championships.
He said it was “unmatched to any other (he’s) been involved in. The support, encouragement and generosity to and by all was incredible.”
Henning has been invited back for the 2018 championships and is looking forward to once again being a part of the competition next year.
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