The 2002 Women's Rugby World Cup sees the appointment of official female referees for the first time.
In the last World Cup in Amsterdam in 1998, there were two assistant referees in the shape of Carlyn Warren from Australia and Sarah Stanley of England.Although the duo were given an opportunity to referee one game each, this time around there are five fully-fledged referees.Stanley returns for her second World Cup and is joined by Canada's Josy Ferraro, USA's Grace Gavin, Nicky Inwood of New Zealand and Veronique Dullier of France. There are also three female assistant referees, England's Debbie Innes and Georgina Perrott as well as Rachel Allan from Switzerland.
The female contingent wil be boosted by appearances from the more familiar and IRB Panel referees from the men's game, Joel Jutge of France, Wales' Nigel Williams and Giulio De Santis of Italy. The ironically named Andrew Ireland of Scotland, who is yet to make it on to the IRB Panel, will also be refereeing.
Ireland captain Rory Best and forwards coach Simon Easterby spoke to the media at the Captain's Run press conference in Paris earlier today, ahead of Ireland's RBS 6 Nations clash with France on Saturday.
Looking forward to locking horns with France, Conor Murray said: "I know with the type of players and type of game Guy Noves likes to play, they can throw up anything. We've got to be ready for any style of game, an offloading game, a free-flowing game."
Ireland forwards coach Simon Easterby chats about sharing the defence coaching duties, Sean O'Brien (tight hamstring) sitting out Wednesday's training session and also talks about the strength of the Welsh back row.
Andrew Trimble talks about coming back from injury to make Ireland's RBS 6 Nations squad and dealing with the excitement and nervousness ahead of a big game like Sunday's Championship opener against Wales.
We hear from returning front rowers Adam McBurney and Conan O'Donnell, captain James Ryan and fellow newcomer Paul Kiernan as the Ireland Under-20s look forward to opening the U-20 RBS 6 Nations on Friday night against Wales at their new home of Donnybrook.
Ireland prop Tadhg Furlong spoke about the excitement of facing his first RBS 6 Nations campaign, the challenge of scrummaging against Wales and his earliest memories of the Championship - which include apple pie!