Basketball Australia Officiating Guidelines 2016/17


Referees are expected to preventatively officiate the game with effective voice. This is a procative approach to prevent illegal contact from occurring rather than being a reactive measure after contact has occurred.


. Hand checking is the illegal use of hands / arms to impede / influence the movement / progress of an opponent with or without a ball.

. A defensive player may not effect an opponent's freedom of movement. A foul is to be called if the opponent's rhythm, speed, balance and quickness (RSBQ) is effected by hand and / or body checks.


. Illegal contact on the shooter is to be called a foul.

. A defensive player must not be penalised for leaving the floor vertically (within their cylinder) or having their hands or arms extended above them within their own cylinder.  


The act of shooting:

. begins when the player starts the continuous movement normally preceding the release of the ball for a shot.

. ends when the ball has left the players hand/s and, in the case of an airborne shooter, both feet have returned to the floor.

A contnuous movement in the act of shooting:

. begins the ball has come to rest in the player's hand/s, and the shooting motion.

. ends when the ball has left the players hand/s, or if an entirely new act of shooting is made.

Where doubt exists, the player is deemed to be in the act of shooting.



. Defence must establish an initial legal guarding position without causing contact. In establishing the legal guarding position the defensive player must face the player with the ball and have both feet on the floor.

. Once established, defence may move to guard their opponent. Offence must expect to be guarded and must be prepared to stop or change direction whenever a defensive player establishes legal guarding position. The defensive player may remain stationery, jump vertically, move laterally or backwards to maintain the initial legal guarding position.

. When moving laterally or backwards to maintain a legal guarding position, the defensive player may have one/both ifor an instant as long as the movement is not towards the player with the ball.  

. Contact must occur on the torso, in which case the defensive player would be considered to have been at the place of contact first.

. Having established a legal guarding position, the defensive player may turn within his cylinder to avoid injury.

. In any of the above situations, the contact should be considered as having been caused by the player with the ball.


. Blocking is illegal contact that impedes the path of an opponent with or without the ball.

. It is illegal to extend arms / elbows outside of the cylinder. If the arms / elbows are outside the cylinder and contact occurs, this is blocking or holding.


. Each player has the right to occupy any position (cylinder) on the court not already occupie by an opponent (i.e. be the first to established the position).

. Screening is an attempt to delay or prevent an opponent without the ball from reaching a desired position on the court.

. Officials are to ensure that screens are stationaey with both feet on the floor (and within their cylinder) if contact occurs.

. Officials are encouraged to eliminate screens where the backside and/or extended arms are used to cause contact.

. Players who deliberately run through legally set screens should be penalised.


. This is an attempt to trick referees into calling a foul (either by flopping / faking and / or exaggerating incidental contact). Often this could occur in changing, screening and shooting situations.

. This type of behaviour does not fit within the spirit of sportsmanship and fair play and if identified should managed early.

. If a player:

a) contacts incidentally with an opponent as a consequence of a regular play and it does not produce any alteration to rhythm of the play, it is deemed to be a no call.

b) flops / fakes generating an illegal contact, a foul is to be called on the flopper.

c) flops / fakes but does not generate any illegal contact.

- An official warning is to be given to the player and the warning must also be communicated to the head coach and, where practical, to the court announcer.

- A technical foul is to be issued to members of the warned the team for any repetition of flopping. Each team is entitled to one warning.

d) A player who fakes flagrantly and does not generate any illegal contact is to be issued with a technical foul.


. The principle of vertically also applies to post play.

. Offensive and defensive players in the post must respect each other's right to a vertical position.

. It is a foul by any player in the post to shoulder or hip his opponent out of position or to interfere with his opponents freedom of movement using extended arms, shoulders, hips, legs or other parts of the body.

. Post play should be viewed and anticipated as a physical (not rough) matchup between two opponents.

. There can be no allowance to '' let them play" when the contact is excessive or rough.


. Broadcast requirements are that a regular game is to be completed within 2 hours.

. Table officials are to provide a 15 second warning during time out situations.

. Referee are encouraged to get the teams on the court and the game underway quickly.

. Referees must hustle to position following stoppages in play.

. Referees must follow the direction of Broadcast / Match Day Managers in relattion to starting each period.

. Only use the floor wipers when completely necessary - encourage the wipers to come onto the court after the play has gone down the other end.


. Unsportsmanlike fouls occur in four instances. These instances are where a player contact foul which, in the judgement of the official is:

i. No effort to play the ball and no legitimate basketball play.

ii. Excessive, hard contact in an effort to play the ball.

iii. A 'last player' situation where:

a. Contact by the defensive player occurs from behind or laterally on an opponent in an attempt to stop the fast break and there is no defensive player between the offensive player and the opponent's bastket.

b. This is valid until the player is in the act of shooting ( unless there is no effort to play the ball or there is excessive contact ).  

iv. In the last 2 minutes of the 4th period / extra period before the ball has been released for the throw in.

a. Contact by the defensive player on an opponent on the court during the last 2 minutes of the 4th period / extra period, when the ball is out of bounds for a throw in and still in the hands of the official or already at the disposal of the player taking the throw in.

b. This is valid until the player is in the act of shooting (unless there is no effort to play the ball or there is excessive contact).

c. Contact by the defensive player on an opponent on the court during the last two minutes of the 4th period, when the ball is out of bounds for a throw in and still in the hands of the official or already at the disposal of the player taking the throw in. If at this moment a defensive player causes contact with a player of the offensive team, and a foul is called, it is to be called as unsportsmanlike foul.


. Inappropriate and unacceptable behaviour by a player or coach will not be tolerated.

. Mistakes made by coaches, players, administrators and referees are a part of the game.

. Disrepectful, inappropriate and unacceptable behaviour when mistakes are made will not be tolerated.

. Either the coach or the assistant coach, but only one of them at any given time, is permitted to remain standing during the game. They may address the players verbally during the game provided they remain within the team bench area. The assistant coach shall not address the officials.

. Referees should not allow coaches to enter the court or leave the team bench area. Except;

a)   During a charged time-out to address the team ( provided they remain within the vicinity of the team bench area).

b)  Attending to an injured player.

c) Courteously requesting a time-out or statistical information from the score table.

. Respectful questions asked in a calm manner by a player or a coach are to be answered by the referee when an opportunity permits. Referees are to listen, understand, respect and respond accordingly. Referees are to provide short, sharp responses to ensure that the game is not unnessarily delayed.

. At no time shall a player or coach be disrespectful to referees and/or table officials.

. A Player/coach is not allowed an objectionable initial reaction to a call, including:

a) Any obvious or blantant or non-verbal disputation of a referee decision.

b) Any action that belittles or demeans a referee.

c) Any obvious non verbal reactions which may incite the crowd.

d) Any use of audible foul language.

. Referees should not allow any continious questioning towards the official or continual commentary on the game.

. Referees should not allow assistant coaches or bench players rising to their feet to complain about referees decisions.



. Referees are encouraged to attempt to de-esculate the situation with effective communication techniques; clearly articulating the behaviour is not acceptable.


. If the inappropriate or unacceptable behaviour continues, the referees is to issue a formal warning.

. This will involve the referee blowing their whisle and giving an obvious, clear and audible warning to the player / coach in a way that everyone knows a warning has been given. 

. The referee will use the words similiar to " Coach / Player, your behaviour is unacceptable / inappropriate and this is a warning for you to stop that behaviour. If you continue, next time will be a technical foul".

. At the same time, the referee will reinforce this verbal warning with visual signals that incorporate a " Stop Sign'' followed by a continuation hand signal and a ''technical foul''.


. If the inappropriate / unacceptable behaviour continues, issue a technical foul.

NOTE - In the event that the behaviour of the coach / player is at such an unacceptable level, referees are entitled to progrss immediately to either Step 2 of Step 3.






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Notice Board


The GSABA Referee Department will be doing the Summer Season 2018-19 Grand Final Roster. Mike Richardson is the Referee Development Co-ordinator, and Tim Round is the Referee Manager. There will be a Referee Sub Committee, which will be headed by Mike Richardson and includes Tim Round (Referee Manager) and Brett Stringer (Referee). A Player Coach is still to be appointed.

* The Minor Round Summer Season 2018 -2019 Umpires Roster will be completed by Dennis Earl.  The GSABA Carnival Umpires Roster will be completed by the GSABA Referee Department.


Any person interested in joining the GSABA Umpiring Panel please contact GSABA Business Administrator - Dennis Earl- We welcome all referees but always looking for umpires who can umpire Senior Grades.