Rolland new referees boss

Alain Rolland has been appointed as World Rugby's high-performance match officials manager.

The 49-year-old takes over the position from Joël Jutge of France, who resigned in December last year.

During an illustrious international refereeing career that started in 2001, Rolland took charge in a total of 66 Tests including two World Cup quarter-finals, one semi-final and the 2007 final between England and South Africa in Paris.

He also refereed three European Cup finals, while his final Test was the Six Nations clash between Wales and France in Cardiff two years ago. Rolland was a scrumhalf during his playing days and won three Test caps for Ireland.

Since retiring as an active referee, Rolland has been working closely with the competitions and performance department of World Rugby as a consultant and during the 2015 World Cup he assisted tier-two teams in identifying ways to reduce unforced errors and successfully ensuring an improvement in those teams’ on-field discipline. He has also been involved in the training and development of TMOs.

'This is a hugely exciting opportunity to stay involved in our great game and I am looking forward to it immensely. It will be an honour and a privilege to work with the world’s best referees while also being involved in identifying and coaching the top younger match officials who will be the World Cup referees of the future,' Rolland said about his role.

Photo: David Rogers/Getty Images

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