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10 June 2021

USRFR’s Chris Busby will join the IRFU’s High Performance Panel ahead of the 2021/22 season alongside Andrew Brace, Frank Murphy and Joy Neville.

The IRFU’s high performance referees officiate across a wide spectrum of tournaments around the globe including Internationals, the Guinness PRO14, EPCR European Club competitions, Rugby Europe, Rugby Championship, Rugby World Cups, the Sevens World Series and the Energia AIL.

Chris has just been appointed to two high profile fixtures in the re-scheduled U20 Six Nations Championships which will take place in Cardiff across June and July.

In the opening round of fixtures, Busby has the whistle for the late kick-off between England and France on Saturday 19th June at the Cardiff Arms Park.

In round four, Busby takes charge of Wales v England again in the late kick-off on Wednesday 7th July with IRFU assistant referees Eoghan Cross and Peter Martin in support and experienced Irish TMO Brian MacNeice also in situ.

Busby has refereed in this competition twice before in the 2020 edition where he oversaw Italy’s defeat of Wales in round 1 and Wales defeat by Scotland in Round 5.

A product of the Ulster Society of Rugby Football Referees (USRFR) having earned his stripes in the AIL and garnered experience in the Rugby Europe Championship in 2020, Busby has refereed seven Guinness PRO14 games and 2 Rainbow Cup fixtures this season to date as well as two EPCR Challenge Cup matches.

Dudley Phillips, IRFU Head of Referees, commented, “Chris has worked hard to get to this point of his refereeing career and this is an exciting new chapter for him as he transitions to the high performance panel.  He has built his experience across multiple competitions and progressed due to his diligence and dedication.”

Richard Kerr, Ulster’s Provincial Referee Development Manager added, “Chris is a fantastic role model for anyone who may be interested in giving refereeing a go. Since joining the USRFR in January 2010, Chris made steady progress through our domestic referee pathway.

“His willingness to listen to and learn from his peers and our excellent team of dedicated referee evaluators and coaches has helped him progress to the IRFU High Performance Panel. We wish him continued success in his refereeing career”.