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South African teams to meet Barnes in Europe

NEWS: Englishman Wayne Barnes, the man at the heart of the RassieGate saga, will be involved when South African teams make their debut in the European Cup next month.


Rassie Erasmus, South Africa’s Director of, has been given a two-game matchday ban by World – following his criticism on social media of refereeing decisions during the ongoing year-end Tests.

It became particularly intense when Barnes was the referee in the Springboks’ 26-30 loss to France In Marseille just under a fortnight ago.

Erasmus has been given a two-game matchday ban by World.

As a result, Erasmus missed the Springboks’ 63-21 win over Italy in Genoa last weekend and the 50-year-old, who guided South Africa to 2019 World Cup glory, won’t be at Twickenham for Saturday’s match against England.

The English pair of Barnes and Matthew Carley, as well as France’s Tual Trainini, will be in charge when the leading South African franchises make their historic entrance into the 2022/23 Champions Cup next month.

EPCR’s Head of Match officials, Tony Spreadbury, made the announcement of the referees for Rounds One and Two on Thursday.


Barnes will be in charge of the Pool B clash at Stade Marcel-Michelin between ASM Clermont Auvergne and the Stormers on Saturday, December 10.

Trainini will be in the middle for the meeting in Pool A of the Sharks and Harlequins at Kings Park in Durban.

Also on Saturday, December 10, Carley will referee the Pool A head-to-head between the Bulls and last season’s EPCR Challenge Cup winners, Lyon, at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria.

* To see all the referee appointments, CLICK HERE!

On the same day, Ireland’s Andrew Brace has been appointed for the confrontation in Pool B between holders, Stade Rochelais, and Northampton Saints at Stade Marcel Deflandre, and what promises to be another massively competitive Pool A contest between Racing 92 and last season’s finalists, Leinster, at Stade Océane in Le Havre will be refereed by Luke Pearce of England.

Pearce’s compatriot, Christophe Ridley, will be in the middle when Munster and five-time tournament winners, Stade Toulousain, renew their rivalry at Thomond Park on Sunday, December 11, in a Pool B match.


Also on Sunday, December 11, the Pool A meeting of Saracens and Edinburgh will see Georgia’s Nika Amashukeli on the whistle.

Ludovic Cayre of France will be making his Champions Cup debut as a referee when he takes charge of the Pool B clash of the Ospreys and Leicester Tigers in Swansea, as will his fellow countryman Luc Ramos, following his appointment for the Round Two fixture between Leinster and Gloucester in Pool A at the RDS Arena on Friday, December 16.

This groundbreaking Champions Cup campaign kicks off on Friday, December 9, with a Pool B contest between London Irish, making a return to EPCR’s top flight for the first time since 2012, and Montpellier Hérault, which will be refereed by Italy’s Andrea Piardi.

The EPCR Challenge Cup also gets underway on Friday, December 9, when Stade Francais Paris and Benetton meet in Round One with Ireland’s Eoghan Cross in the middle, and another Irish official, Chris Busby, has been appointed for USAP v Bristol Bears at Stade Aimé Giral on the same day.

The Lions v Dragons and Section Paloise v Cheetahs fixtures in Pool B on Saturday, December 10, will be refereed by England’s Anthony Woodthorpe and Sam Grove-White of Scotland respectively.


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