Referees Corner – Issue 3 – Munster – 2022/23

November 2, 2022 in News

Welcome to another edition of referees corner. Todays match officials are Andrew Brace, Peter Martin, Oisin Quinn, and the TMO is Leo Colgan. Andrew Brace was born in Cardiff, Wales. He started playing rugby union in Cardiff when he was 12. Between 2010 and 2017 Brace worked as a community rugby officer for Munster Rugby. He previously worked as a community development officer for Cardiff Blues. Brace continued working as a community rugby officer until 2017 when, together with George Clancy, John Lacey and Joy Neville he was one of seven referees offered professional contracts by the IRFU. 


He also previously played for Old Crescent. While playing for Old Crescent, Brace was contacted by an agent to play for the Belgium national team. Brace qualified to represent Belgium through his father’s family. He subsequently helped Belgium win the 2012 Emirates Cup of Nations. He also played for Belgium in the 2012–14 European Nations Cup First Division. We wish him and his team well today. 


November Internationals


The match day officials for Ireland’s international fixtures in November have been announced by World Rugby and the IRFU High Performance Referees will have a busy month on international duty.


For our teams in green, the RFU’s Adam Leal will take charge of the game between Ireland ‘A’ and the All Blacks XV at the RDS on Friday, 4th November. The following day, Georgian referee Nika Amashukeli has the whistle for the game between Ireland and World Champions South Africa at Aviva Stadium.


South African Jaco Peyper is in charge of Ireland v Fiji and New Zealander Ben O’Keeffe is the man in the middle for Ireland’s final game of the Autumn Nations Series against Australia.


IRFU referee Andrew Brace takes charge of two games during this international window – England v Argentina and France v Japan. Joy Neville, who will have just returned from the Women’s Rugby World Cup in New Zealand, is in the TMO hot seat for the France game against the Brave Blossoms.


Frank Murphy in on duty for Scotland against New Zealand at Murrayfield and Chris Busby has the whistle for the French Barbarians against Fiji in Lille.  Both Chris Busby and Eoghan Cross are on duty in Dubai for the World Cup Final Qualifier tournament.  Chris is refereeing the game between Portugal and Hong Kong with Eoghan in the AR role for that game and the clash between the USA and Kenya.


Area Education Sessions


Our monthly area education sessions this month focus on Touch and Touch Laws (Law 18). A number of our referees are heavily involved in touch judging games in the All Ireland League amongst other competitions. The sessions were facilitated by Dermot Blake, John Flynn, Bernie White, Michael Forrestal and Sam Holt. They many covered when the ball is in touch and when it isnt. 


Touch or touch-in-goal

The ball is in touch or touch-in-goal when:

  • The ball or ball-carrier touches the touchline, touch-in-goal line or anything beyond.
  • A player, who is already touching the touchline, touch-in-goal line or anything beyond, catches or holds the ball.
  • If the ball has reached the plane of touch when it is caught, the catcher is not deemed to have taken the ball into touch.
  • If the ball has not reached the plane of touch when it is caught or picked up, the catcher is deemed to have taken the ball into touch, regardless of whether the ball was in motion or stationary.

The ball is not in touch or touch-in-goal if:

  • The ball reaches the plane of touch but is caught, knocked or kicked by a player who is in the playing area.
  • A player jumps, from within or outside the playing area, and catches the ball, and then lands in the playing area, regardless of whether the ball reached the plane of touch.
  • A player jumps from the playing area and knocks (or catches and releases) the ball back into the playing area, before landing in touch or touch-in-goal, regardless of whether the ball reached the plane of touch.
  • A player, who is in touch, kicks or knocks the ball, but does not hold it, provided it has not reached the plane of touch.

Of course it is more complicated than it looks


Want to get involved? 

Feel free to make contact with the Leinster Rugby Referees at  If you are interested in becoming a referee get in contact with us through our Facebook, our website or through twitter @leinsterreferee.