Year 12 boys James Macaulay and Joe Reynolds were recently awarded the Rugby Australia School Student Scholarship. The award was introduced a number of years ago to help raise the profile of refereeing at schools and provide encouragement for young referees to remain in referring when they leave school. 

James and Joe have both been referees for their School and Club for the past two years.  James was recently appointed Captain of Rugby Referees at Shore, providing leadership to younger boys taking up refereeing.

The boys were amongst 27 other students across NSW and QLD who were awarded the scholarship. The recipients will participate in a range of activities designed to improve their knowledge of the game, enhance their performance as referees and expose them to a higher standard of rugby. James and Joe will attend referee workshops, receive additional coaching and mentoring and referee at State Age Championships.

Reflecting on his award, James commented: “I am honoured to be a recipient of the scholarship.  The learning will help me to move ahead in my skills and perhaps follow in the footsteps of Old Boy Angus Gardner (02) as a professional referee.” 

Fellow scholarship recipient, Joe, added: “I will certainly continue referring after Shore.  Hopefully next year I will push into some senior subbies refereeing.”

Master in Charge of Rugby Refereeing, Mr Andrew Lees, commented: “It is pleasing that two Shore boys are involved with this program as it will give them a good grounding to progress through the refereeing ranks.  The boys are great role models for the younger referees at Shore.” He added, “Shore continues to produce high quality schoolboy match officials with many going on to referee after school.”

The refereeing pathway provides an avenue into elite sport outside of playing. There have been a number of Shore Old Boys on the scholarship program including Richard Goswell, Hamish Birt, James Boyer, Alex Carmichael and Mitch O’Donnell. The most notable former scholarship referees include current Super Rugby referee Will Houston and international referee Angus Gardner.



Rugby Scholarship 2


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