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Superheroes in red

September 11, 2021
The athletes in the Beach Wrestling are rightly lauded for their wrestling abilities, tactical acumen, and athleticism but there is another group of individuals who without there would be no matches for the wrestlers to take the sand for, our superheroes in red, the Match referees.

They make the judgement calls with extreme precision and are constantly on the move to ensure they get the best possible angle to make calls of groundings that can be as quick as one second. If it is too close to call as both wrestlers touch the sand with any other part of their body than their hands or feet, they can check with their colleagues at the side who can confirm how many points to be awarded and to who. 

Their eagle eyes help ensure that the correct result is reached and with bouts only lasting three minutes and with every point potentially crucial to the outcome the responsibility on the shoulders of the men and women in red is very high.  They also play a vital part in ensuring that the action is always flowing, often reminding the fighters to keep the grappling going which helps keep the action intense.  Such is the respect that the red superheroes command that their decisions are accepted by the wrestlers without question.

Despite the burden of their responsibilities the spirit amongst the group of officials is always high as they sit together when not officiating, cracking jokes and enjoying the action as fans whilst the sand flies, whilst checking on the information to see their next match and there is a real family feel in the officials’ ringside tent. 

We salute each and every one of you, our superheroes in red

OZKAYA of Turkey competes against Oleksii YAKOVCHUK of Ukraine during the third stop of the UWW Beach Wrestling World Series in Katerini, Greece on September 10, 2021.
The referees of the Greek leg of the 2021 Beach Wrestling World Series.
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