Colin Hutchinson is an inspiration to anyone who wishes to take up the umpiring whistle.
Hutchinson has just blown time on his international umpiring career, which saw him reach 100 international caps.
He has umpired at every level of the game, which culminated at the 2012 London Olympics, his last major tournament.
Unfortunately father time has caught up on Hutchinson and at the tender age of 47, he has had to retire from the international circuit, not his choice but it’s the current age limit for an international umpire in today’s modern game.
Like all today’s umpires, Hutchinson chose to go down the umpiring road, rather than the playing one and at 26 started his illustrious career as one of the top ‘blowers’ in the game.
His no-nonsense approach earned him the respect of players and coaches and soon he began to creep up the umpiring ladders.
Hutchinson has travelled the world umpiring hockey’s most prestigious tournaments, including the Euro Nations in Barcelona in 2003, Manchester 2007 and Amsterdam in 2009.
He has also umpired at the EHL KO16’s several times, but it was tournaments such as the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne, the 2010 World Cup in Delhi and the London Olympics that were amongst the highlights in his international career.
Irish Vice-President and former World Cup and Olympic umpire, Richard Kendrick, said, “Colin has represented Irish Hockey all over the world, with great distinction. I have had the privilege of umpiring with him in the past, seeing him in many tournaments,especially enjoying watching his first Olympic match in London 2012.”