K rock Football

New faces to control GFL Grand Final

GFL Grand Final umpires Will Ross, David Chaston and Steve Guarnaccia. (Sports Media Image/Marcel Berens)

TALENTED teenager Will Ross and the highly-regarded Steve Guarnaccia will make their GFL Grand Final debuts alongside experienced whistleblower David Chaston on Saturday.

Ross and Guarnaccia have climbed into the top three of Geelong Umpire’s rankings in 2019 While Chaston continues to .be regarded as one of the region’s best after controlling last year’s clash between St Joseph’s and St Mary’s.

For Ross, it continues an impressive 2019, in which he has officiated the GFL’s interleague clash with Northern in May and the Vic Country-VAFA match in July.

“I was pretty surprised,” Ross said when he found it would be umpiring the biggest match on the local football calendar.

“I was happy. I’ve had a pretty good year, so (I’ll) cap it off with a GFL Grand Final.”

The 18-year-old, who will have the honour of throwing the ball into the air to get proceedings underway, hopes 2019 is a springboard for his umpiring.

“Hopefully next year I’ll try (out) for VFL, and then see how we go from there … see how far we can go,” Ross said.

Guarnaccia, who oversaw last year’s BFL Grand Final between Modewarre and Barwon Heads, has also been a regular feature on GDFL Grand Final day in recent years.

“Ever since you start umpiring, you want to do the best game on the second last Saturday of September,” he said.

“100 per cent I’ve wanted to try and get to this position, so here we are.”

For Chaston, it’s his sixth GFL Grand Final appearance, with his first coming in 2002 when a Paul Lynch-coached Lara overcame St Joseph’s.

His most recent was when Joeys upset St Mary’s to claim consecutive flags.

Chaston it’s good to see a couple of new faces.

“Will Ross is the No.1 going around, and he has big aspirations, and I’m looking forward to running with Will,” he said.

“And ‘Nacho’ (Guarnaccia) has worked hard over the years, and well-and-truly deserves his chance.”

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