World Rugby has announced the squad of 23 match officials selected to take charge of the 48 matches at this year’s Rugby World Cup in Japan.
The team of officials comprises 12 referees, seven assistant referees and four television match officials (TMOs) representing nine nations.
With significant strength in depth in international officiating, the team has been selected on merit after a comprehensive review of performances over the last four international windows, and features an exciting and strong blend of experience and youth.
Wayne Barnes and Rugby World Cup 2015 final referee Nigel Owens are selected for their fourth consecutive Rugby World Cup as referees, while Luke Pearce, Mathieu Raynal, Ben O’Keeffe, Nic Berry and Angus Gardner are making their Rugby World Cup debut with the whistle after impressive performances in the test arena over the last year.
Referees (12): Wayne Barnes (England), Luke Pearce (England), Jérôme Garcès (France), Romain Poite (France), Pascal Gaüzère (France), Mathieu Raynal (France), Nigel Owens (Wales), Jaco Peyper (South Africa), Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand), Paul Williams (New Zealand), Nic Berry (Australia), Angus Gardner (Australia)
Assistant Referees (seven): Matthew Carley (England, reserve referee), Karl Dickson (England), Andrew Brace (Ireland), Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand), Federico Anselmi (Argentina), Shuhei Kubo (Japan), Alex Ruiz (France)
TMOs (four): Graham Hughes (England), Rowan Kitt (England), Ben Skeen (New Zealand), Marius Jonker (South Africa)