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Courses: Assistant Referees

  • Are You A Premier Referee And Want To Be An Assistant Referee For ITM Cup?
  • Or Maybe You’re an up And Coming Referee And Want To Be An Assistant Referee For Premier Grade?
  • Or Perhaps You’re Not Even A Referee (YET) But You Want To Run Touch For Your Club Or School?
  • Or You’re Simply Looking For A Way To Become A Referee But Want To Start BY RUNNING TOUCH FIRST?

If this sounds like you...Then this course could possibly be what you've been looking for!!


What’s the difference between running touch and being an assistant referee?


A touch judge JUST runs touch and signals successful kicks at goal. An assistant referee not only runs touch and signals successful kicks at goal but also provides any assistance for the referee that the referee sees fit. That could include reporting on foul play, marking off side lines at set piece re starts and during open play, helping with corner flag decisions.

All the things are simply designed to ensure that the right decisions are made at the right time and the only way that can happen is if you’re in the right place.

What will you learn?

This course is a mixture of theory and practical under the broad categories of:

Law (Theory)

Assistant Referees get their authority from Law 6B and Law 19. It is imperative that you know these inside out.
Also, as you’re permitted to report foul play, Law 10 is also a MUST KNOW!


Set piece and during dynamic phases (Practical)
In order to make the right call, you must be IN THE RIGHT POSITION, AT THE RIGHT TIME. During this course you’ll learn “BEST PRACTICE” in relation to corner flag positioning, tackle, ruck and maul, as well as re-starts and set piece.

Communicating as a team of three (Theory and Practical)

If you’re going to assist the referee to make a decision, you MUST know how and when to communicate with them. In this course, you’ll learn what to say, how to say it, when to say it and why it’s an important part of the communication process. You’ll also learn how to use the latest electronic communications equipment used by our professional referees on television.

Some of the theory work is required to be completed prior to your attendance at this course. (Course prerequisite)

The content of this course is designed to apply to most grades of rugby, up to and including ITM Cup/Premier level for both 15's and 7's.

Right place at the right time to make the right decision!

How long is this course?

This course runs for a full day, from 9.00am – 4.00pm, with half the course spent in the classroom learning the theory of positioning and communication and half the course is spent on the field putting into practice what you’ve learnt in the classroom.

Why is this course so long?

Here is a list of some the tasks that an assistant referee can do.

  1. Adjudicate when the ball is in touch, touch in goal, dead, the mark for the line out or the place for the restart and which team throws in the ball.
  2. Adjudicate when conversions kicks or penalty kicks at goal crosses the cross bar in between the uprights.
  3. Report foul play to the referee with any recommendations if asked.

Secondary Duties:

  1. Both AR’s mark the 10 metre offside line at penalties.
  2. If the team awarded a penalty opts to kick for touch, the near side AR rushes downfield to ensure that any kick for touch does not cross the touch in goal or dead ball line.
  3. At a penalty kick for touch, after the far side AR has marked the 10 m offside line, he watches the kick for touch. If it goes out over the touch in goal line or crosses the dead ball line, he rushes back to the mark where the kick was taken from and marks the spot for any possible scrum reset.
  4. Both AR’s mark the 5 metre offside line at scrums. If the scrum is central, both mark the non-feeding team’s offside line.
  5. If the scrum is on one side of the field, the nearside AR can either mark the feeding team’s offside line or assist to manage the scrum engagement.
  6. The far side AR marks the offside line for the non-feeding team at the scrum.
  7. The near side AR at a scrum can assist the referee with the engagement process by standing in line with the tunnel if the referee is on the other side and calling (if required) the side responsible for any infringement that causes the ball to not come out fairly.
  8. The far side AR marks the 10 metre offside line at lineouts for the non- throwing team’s non participants.
  9. The nearside AR marks the line of touch at lineouts and indicates whose throw in it is. The same nearside AR can assist in calling throws that are not straight.
  10. The far side AR marks the defensive offside line at rucks and mauls.
  11. As the ball is cleared from tackles, rucks and mauls, the far side AR runs with the defensive line towards the attacking team with two roles, 1: to watch for any potential foul play and 2: to get in line with the attacking back line, so that you can turn and run with them to assist in any forward pass calls.
  12. As the ball is cleared from tackles, rucks and mauls, the near side AR watches the tackle, ruck or maul unfold to ensure there is no foul play committed behind the back of the referee.
  13. The far side AR marks the spot for the re-start when a kick in general play crosses the touch in goal, or across the dead ball line.
  14. The near side AR chases all kicks in general play to assist the referee in adjudicating when/if the ball crosses the touch in goal, dead ball line.
  15. At kicks in general play, the far side AR moves downfield to assist with collisions in the air decisions.
  16. The nearside AR remains at the place of the kick to ensure the kicker is NOT late tackled.
  17. The nearside AR can also assist with calling any of the kicking team’s offside players as these players will usually be behind the referee.

This is why this course is seven hours long!

How much does this course cost?

Except for your time investment of seven hours, this course is FREE!

What resources will you receive?

All course participants will receive a workbook and certificate of attendance at the completion of the course.

Lunch is also provided!

When is the course being run?

There are no more assistant referee courses being run in 2018.

Referee Manager

Pat Rae
Phone: 07 547 4684
Mobile: 029 487 8429
Email: pat@boprugby.co.nz

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