By ZAC MILBANK
SANFL’s Umpiring Marathon Man, Theron Philp, has blown the whistle in his 250th Statewide Super League game last Saturday.
Officiating in the Eagles v Adelaide clash in Round 3, the evergreen field umpire made his SANFL League debut in the clash between the Eagles and Norwood at Football Park in mid 1998.
”I remember Garry McIntosh was playing for Norwood back then,” Philp recalled.
”He made it quite clear that I was somewhat a junior to League ranks and to make sure that I was going to be on my best behaviour!”
The 46-year-old started his career with SANFL in 1990, progressing through to Reserves level where he has also notched an amazing 235 games.
Entering his 30th consecutive season of field umpiring, Philp is now closing in on officiating a total of 500 SANFL matches overall – League and Reserves combined.
It will be the last milestone he reaches as the Royal Adelaide Hospital physiotherapist has declared this season will be his last.
”This will be my final year – 30 years is a good number to finish on,” said Philp.
”I’ve really enjoyed my career but now it’s time to give the junior guys coming through an opportunity to step up and make the transition into League footy. Hopefully some of them will progress into the AFL.”