An enraged parent that stormed his son’s U8 football match to belt the living shit out of the teenage referee has been commended at a club presentation night for ‘dedication to rugby’.
Noel Edgeworth, 43, sprinted towards 16-year-old junior referee Alex Michaels after a pedantic short-arm penalty was awarded against his son’s team. Edgeworth allegedly threw a flurry of punches in a bid to teach the young official a lesson, leaving the victim bloodied, teary-eyed and questioning his future involvement in the sport.
“He’d been making the same shit calls all day: hands in the ruck, blokes not releasing the ball, collapsed scrums – it was just a fucking joke!” exclaimed an irate Edgeworth.
“Someone had to step up and show the kid that he can’t keep blowing the whistle over every little indiscretion; you’ve got to let the game flow. This is the North Shore, for fuck’s sakes!”
Following the assault, Edgeworth assumed the position of referee for the rest of the game. Observers told ThePublicApology that “the game really opened up after Noel took over.”
“I wondered whether he was a bit harsh on the poor kid – after all, he was just a young schoolboy who volunteered to referee his younger brother’s footy match – but when I saw how Noel was policing the ruck so much more efficiently, I knew he’d made the right decision,” said one spectator who wished to remain anonymous.
“What was a boring game between a bunch of uncoordinated eight-year olds blossomed into an enterprising and engaging tussle, with rugby the ‘real winner’.”
Speaking at the end of season club presentation, North Gordon president Doug Phillips said Edgeworth had “done what was right in the name of rugby.”
“The kid just couldn’t keep the whistle out his mouth – and Noel jumped up and taught him a rugby lesson. He’s a wonderful advocate of running rugby,” he said.
“And while the youngsters might have seemed horrified at the time, they’ll understand down the track that Mr Edgeworth was only trying to prevent the game from turning into a ‘whistle-fest’.”
There is no word on whether the young referee will return to officiate in future matches, but he has reportedly learnt his lesson.
By Dave Edwards