World Rugby has announced the match officials for the Guinness Six Nations 2022, which kicks off on 5 February. IRFU High Performance Referee Andrew Brace will take charge of one game while Frank Murphy, Chris Busby, Joy Neville and Brian McNeice have been named as part of the Officials panel.
Brace will be in charge of Wales v Italy on Super Saturday with Neville as TMO. Brace will also be AR1 for Italy v England with McNeice as TMO.
Busby is one of three Assistant Referees making their championship debut; the others are Pierre Brousset, Tual Trainini (both France). Busby will be AR2 for Wales v Scotland and Scotland v France.
Murphy has been appointed as AR2 for England v Wales and France v England.
Jaco Peyper will take charge of Ireland’s opening game against Wales with Angus Gardner in charge of the game against France a week later.
Georgia’s Nika Amashukeli is one of three Six Nations referee debutants, and is the first Georgian to take charge of a Championship game after refereeing Ireland v Japan in November. He will referee Ireland’s game against Italy in Round 3.
Mathieu Raynal will referee Ireland’s trip to Twickenham to take on England.
Wayne Barnes edges closer to a century of international referee appointments, taking charge of Ireland versus Scotland, his 98th test in his 16th Championship
Chairman of the World Rugby Match Officials Selection Committee Graham Mourie said: “The 2022 Guinness Six Nations represents an important milestone for our match officials on the road to Rugby World Cup 2023 in France.
“Being able to select from the largest pool of match officials since the last Rugby World Cup is exciting and also means that we will be able to optimise preparation on the ground prior to and during the Championship. I would like to extend my congratulations to Nika, Damon and Karl, who will be refereeing their first Six Nations matches, and wish all the best to all the match officials selected for the Championship.”
The appointments for the Women’s and U20 Six Nations will be made in due course.