Davidson to lead first female team of match officials in men's test

The Scottish referee will take charge of Portugal v Italy.

Hollie Davidson to lead first all-female team of match officials in men’s test SNS Group

Scottish referee Hollie Davidson will make history when she leads an all-female team of match officials for next month’s Portugal v Italy men’s international.

Davidson will have Sara Cox (England) and Aurelie Groizeleau (France) as her assistant referees and Claire Hodnett (England) as the Television Match Official (TMO) for the match at Lisbon’s Estadio do Restelo on June 25.

It will be the first time an all-female team have taken charge of a men’s Test match and the first time a female referee has officiated a men’s Six Nations team in a Test.

Davidson became Scottish rugby union’s first full-time professional women’s referee in 2017.

She has taken charge of four matches in the United Rugby Championship, most recently Glasgow v Edinburgh in March, while she has also refereed in the European Challenge Cup and will be on duty at the Women’s Rugby World Cup later this year.

“To be the first woman to referee a men’s Six Nations team is a tremendous honour and an achievement I am proud of,” said Davidson.

“I couldn’t believe it when I heard the news as I didn’t think something like this would have happened so quickly in my career, but I’m really proud and looking forward to the summer.”

World Rugby chairman Sir Bill Beaumont added: “Congratulations to Hollie, Sara, Aurelie and Claire on this historic appointment.

“Today’s announcement signifies the strength and depth that has been developed in female match officials globally and demonstrates the many pathways available to women and girls wanting to get involved in this great game.” 

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