25 September 2020

Former Ireland captain Joy Neville to become first female TMO for men’s test match

Former Ireland rugby captain Joy Neville is set to make history as the first woman to be a television match official for a men’s test match.

Neville, who has been a referee since 2013, has been selected to oversee Wales v Georgia and Scotland v Fiji in the Autumn Nations Cup in November.

She said: "Was it a surprise to be involved as a TMO? Absolutely but all the same, extremely honoured to be involved at that level.

"To be honest, it’s probably when I look back when I’m finished that I’ll probably properly comprehend and really understand my achievements but for now it’s just about going there and doing a job and doing it well.

“So my priority now is to get as much practise as I possibly can so that I’m not remembered for the wrong reasons.”

Another referee, Nigel Owens, will also make history as he will become the first referee to overlook 100 test matches when he takes charge of France v Italy on November 28.

World Rugby chairman Sir Bill Beaumont said: “On behalf of everyone at World Rugby, I’d like to say a big congratulations to Nigel Owens on selection for his 100th Test.

“It’s a remarkable achievement and testament to his passion for refereeing, his character, unwavering dedication to the highest possible performance and fitness standards and his adaptability over an impressive career that has so far spanned 17 years. It will be a massively popular milestone for the sport to celebrate.”

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