Top rugby ref in the making

Nice story last week in the Cairns Post


Author: Joe Flynn

A TEENAGER set to make his senior refereeing debut in FNQ rugby this weekend has been dubbed a “prodigy” by the region’s referees coach.

Cairns and District Rugby Referees Association head educator Bill Dentice believes 17-year-old Jordan Way [pictured left] will become one of the country’s leading referees.

“He’s going to be refereeing Super Rugby one day, I have no doubt about that,” Dentice said.

“He is just a prodigy, and I don’t use that term lightly. His knowledge of the laws is second to none and his man management is just light years ahead of what you would expect.”

The St Augustine’s senior has earned the attention of rugby union’s top officials and is under consideration for a referee’s scholarship with the Australian Rugby Union.

Way is set to make his senior debut this weekend at Jones Park when Atherton take on Wanderers in the FNQ Rugby reserve grade competition.

Way is the first junior to come through the referee academy that was established by FNQ Rugby last year. “I just wanted to give something back to the game,” he said.

“I’ve been playing since I was six and a lot of referees have given away their time for us over the years.”

Fellow 17-year-old Adam Young has also progressed through the academy and will make his senior debut the following week. He said they were not intimidated by officiating grown men.

“They (players) are usually pretty respectful, I think especially because we are younger,” he said.

Queensland Rugby Union development officer Mitch Craig said the referees academy would ensure rugby union’s stocks were strong in coming seasons.