786 new referees in SA

2011-12-08 10:22

Brenden Nel - SuperSport

Johannesburg - South Africa’s rugby refereeing recruitment drive has paid dividends, with the sport recruiting almost 800 new referees countrywide during 2011.

Earlier this year, Director of referees Andre Watson launched the campaign to recruit new referees after surveys found dwindling numbers in the refereeing ranks with potentially catastrophic results for the game as a whole. The figures released on the SA Referee website boast 786 new referees for the country.

Interestingly Western Province recruited by far the most referees in the country, with 159 candidates knocking on their door. They were followed by the Free State with 113, while the Blue Bulls, Boland, Golden Lions and Griquas came close to 90 new referees each.

Even the Griffons, with one of the smallest bases in the country, managed to recruit one referee.

Watson was pleased with the outcome of the recruitment drive but urged referee societies to look for more potential whistleblowers for the sport.

"It is very encouraging and the hope is expressed that each society does its utmost to ‘capture’ as many of these enquiries as possible in order for us all to grow and redress the dire shortage of referees in the country,” Watson told the SA Referees official website.

"Each society is still encouraged and respectfully requested to continue its 'in house' recruitment and not rely on the National campaign’s enquiries only.”

Watson also stressed the importance of race and gender transformation.


By Province

Blue Bulls: 68
Boland: 69
Border: 31
Eastern Province: 44
Free State: 113
Golden Lions: 89
Griffons: 1
Griquas: 89
Leopards: 21
Pumas: 27
Sharks: 34
South Western Districts: 14
Valke: 27
Western Province: 159

By Contact Method

SMS: 51
Website: 400
E-mail: 4
Scholars: 183
Campus: 50
Shopping centres: 21
Sevens 2010: 13
Publicity: 1
Outreach: 63

Race Breakdown

White: 494
Coloured: 174
Black: 118

Gender Breakdown

Male: 678
Female: 108


  • Burtfred - 2011-12-08 10:54

    Where are the Indian refs? Come to think of it, where are the Indian players?

  • Bigrp - 2011-12-08 11:53

    Well done; might make it easier for us already in the system as refs...we sometimes have to ref 5 or 6 games from Friday evening to Saturday evening, hopefully this will help!

  • Willie - 2011-12-08 12:11

    This is a joke! Ask Watson to report back by the end of next season how many of these new recruits are still there. Its a well documented fact that large numbers of very good refs stopped because of the quota system. Unless you start rewarding competency and not window dressing this problem will get worse. Focus on the individuals who do it for the love of the game and not for the potential financial reward.

      Bigrp - 2011-12-08 13:05

      Agree in part with you Willie; however, I'm white and was promoted from candidate to Level 4 and then Level 3 in the space of a can be done if you work hard!

  • Bethoven - 2011-12-09 09:18

    @Bigrp ask yourself, wasit through hard work as you say, or was it through the colour of your skin? think about it

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