Cape Town - Aimee Barrett-Theron has been included in an 18-member match official panel for the Women’s Rugby World Cup in New Zealand.
The global showpiece will take place from October 8 to November 12.
Barrett-Theron is the only South African on the panel. She made her first refereeing appearance at a World Cup five years ago.
Maggie Cogger-Orr (New Zealand), Sara Cox (England), Hollie Davidson (Scotland), Aurélie Groizeleau (France), Lauren Jenner (New Zealand), Amber McLachlan (Australia), Clara Munarini (Italy) and Joy Neville (Ireland) are the other referees on the panel.
“We are very proud of Aimee and how she has only progressed in her refereeing career over the last few years, and I would like to congratulate her on this remarkable achievement,” said Mark Alexander, President of SA Rugby.
“Only the best referees in the world are selected to officiate at the Rugby World Cup, and the fact that Aimee has consistently featured on various international and national panels in the last seven seasons is a testament of the high quality of her refereeing. She has been an inspiration to all women’s referees in the country, and we wish her luck for her second World Cup.”
The team that will officiate the 26 matches comprises nine referees, five assistant referees and four television match officials (TMOs), selected from 11 different unions. Selection for the pinnacle tournament in women’s 15s rugby follows a comprehensive review of match official performances over the last four international windows and features an exciting blend of youth and experience.
Barrett-Theron, who represented the Springbok Women at the Rugby World Cup in England in 2010, said it was “absolutely amazing” to find out she was selected to go to the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand later this year.
“It is a prestige event with the best of the best teams in action, and the quality of women’s rugby at the moment is amazing so it’s going to be a privilege to be a part of it all,” she said.
“I was very fortunate to go to the 2017 event in Ireland, but I was very much a rookie at that stage. I learnt so much from that, but with the support of SA Rugby and World Rugby, I’ve gained a lot of experience over the last couple of years, and I can’t wait to implement that later this year.”
The Springbok Women will make their first appearance at a RWC since 2014 in their Pool C opener against France at Eden Park in Auckland on Saturday September 18, at 4.15am (SA time).
This will be followed by matches against England – the No 1 team in the world – on Thursday, September 23, at 9.15am at the Northland Events Centre in Whangarei, and Fiji on Tuesday, September 28, at the Waitakere Stadium in Auckland at 5.45am.