Hollie Davidson to make rugby history as first female referee in charge of a men’s Six Nations team

Scottish referee Hollie Davidson will make rugby history when she takes charge of next month’s Portugal v Italy men’s international.

Referee Hollie Davidson will take charge of Portugal v Italy. (Photo by Ross Parker / SNS Group)
Referee Hollie Davidson will take charge of Portugal v Italy. (Photo by Ross Parker / SNS Group)

It will be the first time a female referee has officiated a men’s Six Nations team in a Test match.

Davidson will lead an all-female team of match officials and will have Sara Cox of England and Aurelie Groizeleau of France as her assistant referees. England’s Claire Hodnett is the television match official (TMO) for the match at Lisbon’s Estadio do Restelo on June 25.

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It will also be the first time an all-female team have taken charge of a men’s Test match.

Davidson became the Scottish Rugby Union’s first full-time professional women’s referee in 2017.

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She has taken charge of four matches in the United Rugby Championship, most recently Glasgow v Edinburgh in March, while she has also refereed in the European Challenge Cup and will be on duty at the Rugby World Cup in New Zealand later this year.

Davidson has already refereed one men’s Test, Malta’s 37-10 defeat of Cyprus in the Rugby Europe Conference 1 South in March 2019.

“To be the first woman to referee a men’s Six Nations team is a tremendous honour and an achievement I am proud of,” said Davidson.

“I couldn’t believe it when I heard the news as I didn’t think something like this would have happened so quickly in my career, but I’m really proud and looking forward to the summer.”

World Rugby chairman Sir Bill Beaumont said: “Congratulations to Hollie, Sara, Aurelie and Claire on this historic appointment.”

Davidson is a former player and represented Scotland at Under-20 level.

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