Rugby | Rookie ref to blow Boks v Ireland

Cape Town – Unheralded French referee Mathieu Raynal will take charge of the first Test between the Springboks and Ireland at Newlands on Saturday.

Kick-off is at 17:00.

Raynal, 34, will be blowing the whistle in only his seventh Test – and first involving the Springboks.

Raynal made his Test refereeing debut in 2009 in a match between Malta and the Netherlands.

His first match in charge of a tier 1 fixture came in 2012 in the clash between Scotland and Tonga.

In 2013 while refereeing a Top 14 match between Montpellier and Racing Metro, Raynal was caught between two players in a freak accident, resulting in a double fracture to his tibia and fibula, which ruled him out of action for almost a full 12 months.

The second Test between the Boks and Ireland (in Johannesburg on June 18) will be officiated by Australia’s Angus Gardner, while New Zealand’s Glen Jackson will take charge of the third and final clash in Port Elizabeth on June 25.

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