World Rugby has confirmed the Emirates World Rugby Match Official appointments for the 2023 Guinness Six Nations, which runs from 4 February to 18 March.
In total, 15 match officials from eight nations will take charge of one match each during the championship as the road continues to Rugby World Cup 2023 in France.
England’s Karl Dickson will referee the opening match between Wales and Ireland in Cardiff on 4 February, while South Africa’s Jaco Peyper will referee the last as Ireland host England on 18 March.
- England’s Wayne Barnes to referee in his 17th Six Nations with Ireland v France his 26th match in Championship history
- James Doleman (New Zealand) to make his Six Nations debut with England v Italy at Twickenham on 12 February
- Paul Williams (New Zealand) to referee his first Six Nations match since 2020 with England v Scotland on 4 February
- Doleman and Williams return following the lifting of Covid restrictions
As with all internationals, the appointments for the Emirates Match Officials are merit-based and have been made following a thorough review of the November internationals and The Rugby Championship. As usual, the match officials will gather ahead of the window to fine tune alignment and consistency, a constant imperative for the team.
World Rugby Selection Committee Chairman Graham Mourie said: “As we enter a men’s Rugby World Cup year, our focus is very much on performance and culture as we begin to consider selections for France 2023.
“The more time we have with the group, the better it is for everyone, and we constantly challenge ourselves to be better, to achieve alignment and consistency and strengthen understanding with the teams. As with the November tests and The Rugby Championship, the Guinness Six Nations represents another opportunity for a talented group of match officials with a superb work ethic to help facilitate more excellent tests in what is probably the most competitive period in men’s rankings history.”
Meanwhile, World Rugby has also confirmed the match officials for the U20 Six Nations, an opportunity for fans to see players and match officials with senior international ambitions.
Twelve officials from 11 nations will take charge of 15 matches with seven making their U20 Six Nations refereeing debut, while double Rugby World Cup (sevens and 15s) final referee Hollie Davidson is also selected.
- Angus Mabey (New Zealand), Reuben Keane (Australia), Luc Ramos (France), Ben Breakspear (Wales), Anthony Woodthorpe (England), Takehito Namekawa (Japan) and Morné Ferreira (South Africa) will all referee their first U20 Six Nations matches
- Angus Mabey (New Zealand), Reuben Keane (Australia) and Hollie Davidson (Scotland) to each referee two matches in competition
RWC 2021 final referee Hollie Davidson to officiate in her second U20 Six Nations