The role of registrar with a football club is not the sexiest, coolest one. It doesn’t hold the ceremonial cachet of “president” nor the respect of “treasurer”. Even “gear steward” sounds more functional. Yet the registrars hold the most important role at a club and the MWFA given that without Registrars there would be no players or coaches or managers. Without a registrar there would be no club or competition.
So yes – it’s important.
Yet so un-cool is the gig that no-one really knows what it is that they do. Melanie Boykos could tell you. She’s been registrar of Pittwater RSL FC for the last three years. So good is she that the club gave her the President’s Award. You want to know the role? Ask Mel Boykos.
“We’re the first point of call when people are registering,” she reveals. “We fill in Play Football details, check IDs, approve regos. We send players to teams and liaise with age coordinators. We register coaches and managers. We make sure Working With Children checks are complete. We answer all the questions. We’re very busy from January to end of March. I’m lucky there’s more than one of us at Pittwater!”
Boykos has been with Pittwater for seven years. She grew up as an ice skater but came to football when she met her husband, Premier League assistant coach Paul Boykos.
“I married into it!” she smiles. “I married into a big football family. My husband’s father was right into it and our two kids are right into it now. So I’m a football mum. And I love it.”
Boykos has helped register the junior careers of thousands of young players, several of whom have gone on to play for the club’s senior teams as well as Manly United teams as juniors and seniors, boys and girls. She says everyone on the Pittwater committee has the same aim. “We all want to see kids playing football and for our club to grow,” says Boykos. “It’s a really great community that way. Great people who’ve become great friends who give up their time and get a lot out of it.”
Boykos – who also works full-time four days a week – estimates she’d spend 20 hours a week during the busy January to March period. When the season kicks off she’s involved as an age co-ordinator for her sons’ teams. And then she staffs the barbecue as good club folk do. She says she gets plenty from it, too.
“In the first round on Saturday it was so lovely to see the U/6s playing their first game, scoring their first goals,” she says. “You’re on the barbecue and it’s an amazing atmosphere, all the kids are out in the fresh air and having a ball. It’s lovely to give back to the community and be part of something good.”
Boykos’s most memorable match was last year’s Premier League grand final when Pittwater got over Brookvale on penalties. “It was a great atmosphere,” she says. “We organised to have all the kids down there and it was a very exciting thing to be part of for the whole club and community.”
And has she ever seen anything out of the ordinary come through, such as a kid with a beard trying to join the U/12s. “No!” she laughs. “Everyone’s birth certificates have been above board! We haven’t had to call anyone out like that!”
That would not be cool.
By Matt Cleary