Become a Referee

Become a Scottish Snooker Referee

It can be a satisfying experience, whether a part time hobby or an occupation for retirement.

You will have an opportunity to referee the stars of tomorrow, make new friends and perhaps progress to refereeing professional matches alongside current Scottish referees who do so.

The Scottish Referee Scheme is operated on behalf of the National Governing Body by The Scottish Billiards & Snooker Referees Association (SBSRA).
They are responsible for training and examination and also allocating referee appointments in Scotland on behalf of Caledonian Snooker Ltd (NGB)

Machella Tabb

There are 3 classes of referee plus examiners and tutors:-

  • Class 3 is a beginner
  • Class 2 is a competent referee
  • Class 1 is an excellent referee
  • Examiners are class 1 referees who have received additional training on rules and teaching methods
  • Tutors are experienced examiners who manage referee training and examinations across an area or region

Class 3:-
To become a Class 3, you will have to learn the rules thoroughly. Study the rules carefully over a period of a couple of months before you attend the examination seminar.

The questions will be straight forward (no trick ones) and you will be expected to know most of the answers. If you are not 100%, that is not necessarily a failure, but we do demand high standards so ensure that you listen to the questions.

We hope that you will pass and when you have, the tutor / examiner will assist you in some of the more practical elements of refereeing. You will learn how to prepare a table, what to wear, where to stand and how to conduct a match and many other little bits of information to help you on your way.

At your first tournament the Tournament Director assist you. They will conduct a pre match briefing and if you are unsure about your involvement just ask the TD if you know what you are doing then the tournament goes well for them too.

Once you are past this hurdle you will be into your career as a referee and who knows where that might take you. NGB referees have the opportunity to travel al;l over the world refereeing International events and some minor events for World Snooker.

Leo Scullion

A Referee has just two functions when officiating:-

  • Assist the flow of the game – Re-spot balls; manage equipment; maintain the scores and match sheet.
  • Represent the non-striker – Application of the rules; decision making, etc.

Your first step to becoming a referee is to contact the Secretary of the Referees Association…

You will be asked to complete an application form and payment of £10.00 fee to register your interest, get the ball rolling and book your training seminar. This fee must be paid at least 6 weeks in advance to secure your examination. Advice will be given at this time to give you some indication of the next steps to be taken

A seminar(s) of approximately 6 hours will be organised and following completion a date will be agreed for your Class 3 examination; this could be 1 x 6hrs, 2 x 3hrs, 3 x 2hrs depending upon numbers and availability of venues, etc – these seminars often include persons not intending to become referees but wish to learn and understand the rules.

Rules of snooker:-
Prior to this you will have studied the “Rule Book” (available from SBRSA) and study the contents. You can of course download the current rules from either the World Snooker website or the Scottish Snooker website, which will save you a purchase of the pocket book until you have passed your first examination.

The Scottish Referees Seminars are designed to help you understand all the rules, their nuances and the most significant aspects; you can also study reading material which will be made known to you after your initial registration application

On passing your grade 3 examination, the Tutor/Examiner will notify the Referees Association and the NGB office.

Joining up:-
Your next step is to join the SBSRA which requires a £10 per annum subscription

On payment of your fee you will be sent your SBSRA ID card, and be entitled to purchase a name badge, blazer badge and association tie from the association.

Class 2:-
You are required to keep a log of your refereeing appointments and after two years can be examined /considered for examination for upgrade to Class 2. Your mentor will advise and help prepare you for this event, should it be considered that you have developed the necessary expertise and experience.

Class 1:-
After two more years, you can be considered for upgrade to Class 1 – this is the highest qualification and demonstrates your ability to referee at the highest level and be able to explain the meaning of the rules as well. You will need to discuss this with a Tutor/Examiner, who will advise you on your suitability and arrange for an examination panel and suitable match for this examination.

World Snooker are always enquiring about ‘good’ referees (at least Class2), among the younger age groups for future appointments and will frequently ask NGBs for their recommendations.

Scottish Snooker looks forward to your participation as a referee. Don’t delay!