American Major League Rugby loads up on SA Referees
DALLAS (August 6, 2020) – Major League Rugby (MLR) has announced today that former international SA rugby ref Jonathan Kaplan will be given the prestigious role of heading up all appointments and development of MLR match officials for the 2021 season. Another South African Chris Pollock has been chosen to assist Kaplan in a technical advisory capacity
Kaplan and Pollock have officiated at no less than six Rugby World Cups and have a massive 96 matches behind their names which includes five B&I Lions tours. They bring a wealth of international experience to MLR which will be eagerly utilised.
“We are pleased to welcome Jonathan Kaplan and Chris Pollock to Major League Rugby,” said Commissioner George Killebrew. “Their caliber speaks for itself and their experience at the highest level will no doubt be beneficial for our growing pool of officials.”
The duo will not only focus on developing existing talent in North America with the aim to produce top flight American refs for the future but will also look to bring referees from overseas into the MLR pool in order to add to the North American refereeing talent.
“We are both very excited to be able to contribute to the refereeing landscape in MLR,” said Kaplan. “We’re hoping to use our experience and knowledge of the game at the elite level to identify and develop match officials with the express aim of improving the quality of the game in MLR and in North America.”
“We recognize the importance of the man in the middle in facilitating an action packed and easy to understand game for fans to fall in love with. We look forward to using Jonathan and Chris’ expertise to help lead this,” said Killebrew.
No doubt Kaplan and Pollack will add invaluable experience to rugby officialdom in the USA and who knows, maybe as a result we’ll see an American ref handling a Rugby World Cup final in the not too distant future and we can chalk it up as another win for South African ingenuity?
(Source: Major League Rugby)