Speaking to the IRB comms chief Chris Rea today (care of www.irb.com) John Jeffrey, acting chair of the referees selection committee gives some interesting insight.
Top news from these 10 mins:
1) 8 strong aspiring panel for junior world cup in South Africa announced including: JP Doyle and Greg Garner (RFU), Leighton Hodges (WRU), Glenn Jackson (NZRFU), Angus Gardner (ARU), Francisco Pastrana (ARG), Lourens van der Merwe (SARFU), Mathieu Reynal (FFR). Congrats to all, especially JP who is a good friend having got onto the RFU Panel at the same time.
2) The TMO powers will be extended during the autumn international series to include things of concern in the passage of play leading to a try
3) Paddy O’Brien requested to stand down from his XVs role and then was found his 7s role.
4) Future elite referees do not necessarily need to be professional referees, but do need to be involved in Heineken Cup (NH) or SuperRugby (SH) to be considered for promotion to the new streamlined elite panel which will, on the face of it be more fluid than before (four selection meetings a year rather than two)