Female umpire could make AFL history

7News Melbourne with Nick McCallum

Female umpire could make AFL history

The AFL is moving towards appointing its first female field umpire.

Lucinda Lopes stands up to men twice her size, takes no nonsense, and could make football history.

The 20-year-old has bounced into history as the first woman to umpire a TAC game - the AFL's feeder competition.

"I've got to be as tough as what any umpire has to be," she said.

"It's no difference just because I'm a female. I'm there to do a job and I want to be the best at it."

The 20-year-old is passionate about the often unwanted gig.

"Oh I just love umpiring. It's my life pretty much," she said.

She played AFL AusKick, but switched to umpiring to remain in the game.

Now in the VFL umpires' squad, she's being fast tracked towards the AFL.

Her bouncing and running skills match those of her male colleagues, so too does her mental strength, a trait which has earned her the respect of senior coaches.

VFL umpiring coach Cam Nash said: "Umpiring is a tough caper for anyone that has a go at it, but she's very level-headed and focused."

Lucinda's selective deafness protects her from the ugly side of the game - the abuse.

"You're just so focused on the game and what the players are doing, you just block it out," she said.

And Lucinda is happy to blow the whistle on her ambition.

"I dreamed about making the VFL and I'm there now.

"So I guess Ive got nothing to lose...just keep hoping and dreaming that one day I'll be in the AFL."