Covering the Goulburn and Murray valleys

Football's a family game for Braumans

The family bond has grown stronger between Craig Brauman and his daughters, Macey and Keldi, since becoming umpires last year.

MATTHEW GALEA May 1, 2014 3:10am

Macey, Craig and Keldi Brauman have grown closer since becoming umpires last season.

Umpiring has only helped to increase the bond between Craig Brauman and his daughters, Macey and Keldi.

Macey, 14, and Keldi, 12, got involved in the Goulburn Valley Football Umpires Association last season when their father made a return to umpiring last year after 28 years.

‘‘I started umpiring in about 1983 and did the 1984 and 1985 seasons as well, but then I left Shepparton and moved to Melbourne,’’ Craig said.

‘‘I came back about eight years ago and started playing with Katandra Football Club, but when I finished up there I still had a bit of a passion for football and wanted to get involved, so last year I started football umpiring.

‘‘I went from boundary umpiring to central umpiring which was a big change, so now I’m doing all different levels of football, but I’d love to get back to senior GVFL football one day.’’

Craig said umpiring had maintained a positive environment since his first days as an umpire and he enjoyed the continued interaction with players before and after games.

On top of that, it provides him a unique way to spend time with his two daughters.

‘‘I got them involved straight away when I came back last year and they both run the boundary,’’ Craig said.

‘‘It’s fantastic. Every Saturday I get both my girls and we go for a run around and it’s something a dad normally wouldn’t do with his daughters.

‘‘It’s a good, fun thing for us.’’

The return to umpiring has been a successful one for Craig and Macey and Keldi are showing plenty of promise as well.

Craig won best first-year umpire last year, while Keldi won best junior club person.

Macey and Craig also umpired a number of grand finals last year across a range of levels.

‘‘A lot of the clubs last year loved the girls coming along, it was a great experience for them,’’ Craig said.

‘‘There was no negativity whatsoever.

‘‘We’d go into the rooms before the game and speak to the players to let them know we had 12 and 14-year-old girls umpiring on the boundary and they’d take it on board and do what they could to help the girls out.

‘‘It’s been a really nice experience for myself and the girls.’’

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