NSW Rugby take charge with females only referees course

by Staff Writer

Fancy yourself as the next Amy Perrett?

NSW Rugby is running female only Foundation courses to give budding female referees the opportunity to discover what it takes to make it out of the classroom and onto the field. The first of these courses is being hosted by Pymble Ladies' College over the evenings of 10 and 17 March.

The program is being run across two, four-hour sessions and will form a practical course designed to give participants an opportunity to actively engage in the game and test their skills with the whistle in hand.

Amy Perrett, is one of the game’s leading female referees, having officiated a Women’s Rugby World Cup Final last year, along with numerous Six Nations Championship and Sevens World Series fixtures.

Despite working as a disability care worker, Perrett still finds time to live a double life as an international Rugby referee and is excited to see more females following in her footsteps.

“These programs are incredibly important for the future development of the game and it is great to see female refereeing continue to grow at a professional and grassroots level” Amy said.

“If you can get involved in refereeing from a young age, it’s a great chance to expand your skillset and enjoy the game for a long period of time.”

Perrett made the transition from player to referee in 2003 at just 14 years of age and has risen rapidly through the ranks, making her international debut in the 2012 Women’s Sevens Challenge Cup in Hong Kong.

With the women’s game on the rise, Perrett believes there is a real window of opportunity for young referees looking to take charge and plenty of interesting goals they can work towards.

“It’s important for female referees to know that there is a pathway out there for everyone.”

“I think practice is key and if young referees can gain some match experience early on, it will hold them in good stead down the track.

“There is also a fantastic opportunity to expand your potential and explore what you are capable of doing, whether that be the Olympic Games or the Rugby World Cup.”

The initiative forms part of Australian Rugby Union’s strategic plan to attract more females to game through participation, coaching and match officiating.

If you are interested in attending a female only Foundation course and becoming a referee yourself, please contact alex.richards@rugby.com.au. You are also welcome to attend one of the scheduled public courses, as at www.rugby.com.au/nswcourses.

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