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South Africa’s top female referee, Aimee Barrett-Theron, and Cwengile Jadezweni will continue to make their mark in the international arena in February after being named on the referee panel for the Women’s RBS 6 Nations competition.

Barrett-Theron, who broke onto the international scene last season by being named on the World Rugby Women’s Sevens Series referee panel and officiating at the Rio Olympic Games before taking charge of her first Test between Japan and Fiji in Japan in December, will officiate the opening Women’s 6 Nations Test between Scotland and Ireland at the Broadwood Stadium in Cumbernauld, Scotland, on Friday, 3 February.

Jadezweni, known as JD among his colleagues, has been tasked with officiating the match between Scotland and Wales also at the Broadwood Stadium on Friday, 24 February, and will serve as an assistant referee in the matches between Italy and Wales at Stadio Comunale Pacifico in Italy on Saturday, 4 February, and France and Scotland at Stade Marcel-Defiandre in France on Saturday, 11 February, respectively.

“We are very proud of Aimee and JD,” said SA Rugby CEO Jurie Roux. “We are committed to producing world-class referees, and these young and upcoming referees are certainly making their mark in the game.

“They were both exposed to top-class international rugby last season, and thanks to their hard work and dedication, we will again see them feature among some of the top referees in the Women’s 6 Nations. We wish them luck at the tournament and we hope to see them continue making strides in the referee ranks.”

Barrett-Theron’s other achievements in 2016 included officiating the Women’s Interprovincial Competition final between Border and Western Province in East London and serving as an assistant referee in a Currie Cup Premier Division match between Boland and the Cell C Sharks.She has been included on SA Rugby’s National B Panel this season with the likes of Ben Crouse, Paul Mente, Sindile Ngcese, Vusi Msibi, Lourens van der Merwe and Jaco Pretorius. This means that she will be eligible to officiate matches in the SA Rugby U19, U20 and U21 Championship, a vast step-up from last year when she was included on the women’s panel.

Jadezweni also had a rewarding 2016 season, which included being named on the referee panel for the World Rugby U20 Championship in Manchester and making his Test debut in Nairobi between Kenya and Hong Kong.

Barrett-Theron and Jadezweni will depart for the Women’s 6 Nations on Monday, 30 January.

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