New boss for SA Rugby referees

Mzwamadoda 'Banks' Yantolo has been appointed as SA Rugby’s new referees manager, succeeding André Watson.

SA Rugby terminated the employment of Watson last July after a disciplinary investigation, and on Friday it was confirmed that Yantolo has stepped into the role as referees boss.

Yantolo became a referee in 2003, but he switched his focus to being a referee selector after a knee injury ended his refereeing career. Yantolo, who started in his new position last month, will report to Rassie Erasmus, general manager of the rugby department based in Cape Town.

'We strive to be the best in every aspect of the game and our referees department certainly forms one of the key elements of the game,' SA Rugby CEO Jurie Roux said. 'Over the years we have produced some of the best referees in the world, and by grooming our referees correctly and equipping them with all the necessary skills from understanding and analysing the laws of the game to writing referee reports, we hope to see many more of our referees being named on World Rugby panels in future.'

The SA Rugby referees department kicked off their 2016 season last month with a four-day camp in Cape Town, which featured fitness tests and seminars focusing on the different aspects of the game to ensure that they continue to make their presence felt among the top referees in World Rugby.

The camp included an extensive rugby laws examination and was attended by referees, television match officials, selectors, coaches and performance reviewers.

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Craig Lewis