Country Rugby League (CRL) will look to strengthen the pathways for young referees in 2018 following the announcement of a junior representative squad.
A total of 20 referees have been chosen to participate and includes Group Three’s Bayley Dimarco and Zac Withers.
The announcement brings the pathway in line with the National Structure of Officiating and mirrors the structure of both the New South Wales Rugby League and Queensland Rugby League Junior Representative programs.
NRL National Pathways Coach Shayne Hayne, who has been instrumental in the formation of the program, believes the new structure provides a great opportunity for young regional referees.
“With these new pathways and structures in place, it allows CRL referees to stay at home and not have to leave their area and still have the opportunity to receive additional education to assist them in becoming Elite match Officials,” Shayne said.
“There is now a clear pathway for CRL referees to become an elite match official and I am confident this will translate into quality on-field performances.
“I’d like to thank Country Rugby League for their assistance in creating this opportunity for young referees throughout New South Wales.”
Selected referees will commence training over summer before being appointed to officiate at the 2018 CRL Country Championships.