The International Rugby Board has announced the match official appointments for The Rugby Championship 2014 and upcoming Rugby World Cup 2015 qualifiers.
Appointments were made by the IRB Match Official Selection Committee at its meeting in New Zealand and follow a detailed review of recent performances during the recent June Tests and IRB tournaments.
The Rugby Championship opener between Australia and New Zealand in Sydney on 16 August will be refereed by South Africa’s Jaco Peyper.
The appointments for the 12 Championship fixtures feature a blend of northern and southern hemisphere match officials selected on form.
With Rugby World Cup 2015 qualification reaching its climax, the appointments have also been made for the key play-off matches, including the home and away Repechage matches that will determine the 20th and final team for England 2015. Romain Poite will take charge of the decisive match on 11/12 October.
IRB Match Official Selection Committee Chairman John Jeffrey said: “As we build towards Rugby World Cup 2015, our focus continues to be clear and consistent decision-making and the highest standards of physical conditioning. The Rugby Championship 2014 appointments have been made following careful consideration to recent performances at elite level, including the June Tests and other IRB Tournaments. We continue to consult with coaches in making our selection decisions and I would like to thank Unions for their full commitment and support of the official feedback channels.”
The selection system allows for movement in and out of the panel based on form and rewards the top performers and young referees who have graduated through the performance pathway ahead of Rugby World Cup 2015 in England.