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Match officials confirmed for five women's Tests

NEWS: World Rugby has confirmed the Match Officials for five women’s Test matches in June and July.

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Five officials from four countries will take charge of the matches, which include a two-test series between Fiji and Japan, the second O’Reilly Cup encounter between Australia and New Zealand, and the Wales v Spain WXV play-off.

Tyler Miller (Australia) and Maggie Cogger-Orr (New Zealand) will referee the Fiji v Japan matches in Suva on 14 June and Lautoka on 20 June respectively before both focus on sevens and the Olympic Games Paris 2024.

Aurélie Groizeleau (France) will take charge of the only match of the five in Europe, the WXV play-off between Wales and Rugby Europe Women’s Championship 2024 winners Spain at Cardiff Arms Park in Cardiff on 29 June.

The winner will qualify for WXV 2 in South Africa, with the loser heading to Dubai for WXV 3.

Natarsha Ganley (New Zealand) will referee the Australia v Fiji fixture at Allianz Stadium in Sydney on 6 July, before Sara Cox (England) is in the middle for Australia v New Zealand at Ballymore in Brisbane on 14 July.

That match is the second of two in the O’Reilly Cup 2024 with New Zealand having retained the trophy with a 67-19 victory in North Harbour on 25 May.

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It will be the 39th test in charge for Cox, drawing her level with South Africa’s Aimee Barrett-Theron as the most-capped female referee in test history.

World Rugby High Performance Women’s Referee Manager Alhambra Nievas said: “These test matches are important for the match official team as we look to continue building momentum from the Guinness Women’s Six Nations and Pacific Four Series as part of our preparations on the road to WXV and, ultimately, Women’s Rugby World Cup 2025.”

World Rugby has also confirmed that Amy Perrett has been appointed Women’s Match Officials Development Coach, the Australian joining Nievas, and new Elite Women’s 15s Match Officials Head Coach Joy Neville in the new management structure.

Perrett refereed 16 tests during her career, including the Women’s World Cup 2014 final between England and Canada in France, and took charge of the first-ever Olympic rugby sevens match at Rio 2016.

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