10 Dec, 12:23
Ireland's John Lacey will referee his first ever RBS 6 Nations match in February, while Alain Rolland is also included in the Elite Panel in what is his last season.
The unnamed contestant has been specially selected by the IRFU Charitable Trust to perform at the 2007 Charity You're A Star which kicks off this Saturday evening (28th July 2007.)
This is the third series of the popular RTÉ show and speculation is rife about the identity of the contestants, which won't be revealed until the opening night, Saturday 28 July at 8pm.
Through their involvement with Charity You're A Star, the IRFU Charitable Trust are anxious to raise much needed funds to support injured players and their families through help with locomotory expenses, specialised equipment (such as lifting equipment, beds, or wheelchairs), home alterations, medical expenses, nursing and caring costs, motor vehicles etc.
Serious rugby injury is a frightening prospect for any player, and his, or her, family. Rugby is a contact game and injuries are a reality. Over the years there have been a number of players seriously injured involving various forms of paralysis.
The IRFU Charitable Trust are remaining tight-lipped about the identity of their celebrity singer, but have promised that the individual is "hugely entertaining and will be adored by the crowds!".
"We are calling on all rugby players, supporters and friends to tune in to Charity You're A Star on Saturday night and vote for our mystery celebrity. Each call raises vital funds for this worthy cause and keeps our star in the competition! The number to dial to support the IRFU Charitable Trust is:
or from Northern Ireland
Welcoming the IRFU Charitable Trust involvement in Charity You're A Star, former Irish Rugby international Ollie Campbell, urged voters to support the charity's candidate: "Only when people are faced with a serious rugby injury do they realize the very real need for the support of an organisation like the Charitable Trust. I can not stress how important it is to get dialing and support the vital work carried out by this charity. If every Irish Rugby fan votes just once, the difference it makes will be phenomenal!".
New presenter Brian Ormond is no stranger to the show having already hosted RTÉ's You're A Star Plus while also stepping up as 'presenter on the road' for last year's auditions. A former contestant on RTÉ's You're A Star, Brian will have lots of advice and encouragement for our 'would be' singers.
RTÉ's Charity You're A Star veteran and Sunday Independent journalist Brendan O'Connor will be joined in the hot seat by Sunday World columnist and former Miss Ireland Amanda Brunker. Amanda, who recently gave birth to her second son, took part in the very first series of Charity You're A Star and will now be switching her talents to the other side of the stage!
Finally, Brian McFadden, formerly of Westlife and now a solo artist, will be on hand to give his opinion on the contestants' performances.
Lines open following the performance by the final act this Saturday evening and remain open 24 hours for the two weeks duration of the competition.