Riley Chapman-Basketball Referee




There are absolutely no surprises to hear Riley Chapman is excelling in the discipline of Basketball Refereeing. With a heavy interest in Basketball from a very young age, he travelled with the sport and enjoyed success as a valued starting five member of multiple Cairns Representative teams.

At 11 years of age, the chance to earn a little extra pocket money by throwing himself in the ring to learn refereeing, was an opportunity that has proven invaluable. With a larger than life personality, Riley is well suited to the career that has appeared to have chosen him and not the other way around. Confident, keen, sociable, interactive and a fantastic communicator, he has taken to the discipline like a duck to water…and while we’re on the topic of ducks, I wanted to ask Riley a pressing question.


🎄CC: So Riley, how to do you cope when the players don’t agree with one of your calls, and have a go at you personally?
📣RC: Like water off a ducks back! Actually, I listen to what they have to say, respond, and that’s that. I’m not worried. We are taught a little on how to manage those things by Toni (Head Referee at the Cairns Basketball Association) and by our Referee educators who observe our games at state championship tournaments.

🎄CC: So why refereeing?
📣RC: I started doing it because it was a good way to learn more about the game. Now, I like the travel, meeting new people, and the opportunity to get away from my parents. (The latter comment may have been added by Riley’s mother, but there was no clear argument from Riley!)


With his refereeing career sky rocketing in the last year, the offers to work at higher level tournaments are coming in. Refereeing his first International game last night between an Australian Indigenous team and a New Zealand Maori team tested him as tempers flared between players and coaches. How did Riley handle it?

Like water off a ducks back of course!

Capturing Cairns wishes Riley luck in his future endeavours.

Age: 15
Sport: Basketball Refereeing

Home: Cairns Basketball

City: Cairns
Mentor: Toni Caldwell
Goals: NBL Referee


🏀Invited to attend the QLD State Champs to ref the U16 and U18 Boys in January-The youngest referee invited to the U18’s.
🏀Awarded the Golden Whistle at the U16 Girls State Championships for his improvement, teamwork and outstanding efforts.
🏀Selected to referee the U14 Boys Gold medal game at State Championships
🏀Invited to the State Schools Basketball Championship for U18’s-Only 1 of 3 out of the Metropolitan area and again the youngest referee there.
🏀Invited by the Taipans to referee a pre-season game.
🏀Refereed the Cairns Dolphins playing against a US college team
🏀Refereed the Marlins playing against a US college team

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