That’s a ref wrap!
As well as the huge on-field successes of English teams at the European Touch Championships in Vichy, the success extended to many of the English referees at the tournament (without whom of course there wouldn’t be any matches!)
After sending nearly a third of the entire contingent of referees - the largest of any single nation - to the tournament, 15 of the 27 referees who travelled were appointed to finals, and England provided the top ranked male (Gareth Hinds) and female (Alice 'Scooby' Watchorn) referees. Several referees made their European debuts, and many others achieved upgrades and awards.
Robin Budd, England Touch Referee manager, said: "Euros are always challenging due to the long days, the pressure to perform on important games, and the quality of some of the play.
"The heat this week added another dimension - but I couldn't be more proud of how everyone, including our contingent, stepped up.
"There were huge improvements across the board, and some amazing performances as reflected by the names from England in the finals appointments and upgrade lists.
"I'm excited for the future, as we had some awesome performances by the debutante referees and a load more who have developed incredibly from last year's tournament."
Dhris Simon, England Touch CEO, added: “I’m so proud of our referee contingent and all the hard work they’ve put in during a long season including two major international tournaments. The number of top-level badges being achieved shows that we have real strength in depth in our referee ranks.
"I’m especially grateful to our referee manager, Robin Budd, for all his incredible dedication to the sport in the UK and Europe; the Lucas van Hoff award going to Robin this week was richly deserved!”
The full listings are below:
Chair of Tournament Referee Coaching Panel
Tournament Referee Manager
Upgrade to Level 4 Referee Coach
Lucas van Hoff award (for dedication to the development of referees in the sport)
Upgrade to Level 5 (the highest-level badge)
Upgrade to Level 4
Upgrade to Level 3
M45: Mike Davis, Rachael Atkins
M40: Theo Edwards, Fergal Evans
W40: Matthew Emmerson, Oliver Exton,
X30: Layo Aromire
M30: Robin Budd, Jack Harris
XO: Dan Harrison, Kathy van de Rijt
WO: Jordi Bittloch
MO: Alice Watchorn, Gareth Hines, Nicolas van de Rijt