It was a great honour for the ARCB to have two of our finest in Andy Fogarty and John Martin perform the roles of 5th and 6th Officials at the recent Ireland v South Africa clash in the Autumn Internationals Series. Below is a short report from John on his duties for the day and his experience:
“I had the honour of being 6th Official at the Ireland vs South Africa International on Sat 5th November last. Andy Fogarty was also involved as 5th. So, first caps for us both!
My own role was mainly with paperwork, and acting as assistant to Paul Haycock as 4th in after-match form filling. One primary job, between us 4,5 & 6 is to time Sin bins, i.e. 10mins off stadium clock. HIA, Head injury Assessments are 12 minutes normal time.
The ‘Tick box’ on the sub card, be it Injury, Tactical, Blood is important. It is a behind the scenes support role. We would link with the TV floor manager when replacements come on, for TV graphic and commentator data.
Andy had to operate the digital display for the 1st half individual replacements. It is not practical for multiple substitutions. I had Nika’s spare whistle in my pocket, in case there was a malfunction.
Looking back, the experience I got as 5th official in the Sportsground several years back was a big help. You can’t be a spectator or get emotionally involved. You have to keep your wits about you and stay switched on.
Overall, it was a great experience to be involved in an extremely competitive International involving the #1 ranked team versus the World Champions.”
John J. Martin,