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Dublin: 8°C Tuesday 27 October 2020

IRFU's Brace named in 23-man match officials squad for World Cup

Nigel Owens and Wayne Barnes will referee at their fourth consecutive World Cups.

THE IRFU’S ANDREW Brace has been included in the official 23-man match officials squad for the 2019 Rugby World Cup.

30-year-old Brace will be one of seven assistant referees at the tournament, which takes place from 20 September until 2 November in Japan.

Andrew Brace Brace is one of seven assistant referees named. Source: Laszlo Geczo/INPHO

There are no Irishmen among the 12 main referees named by World Rugby, with Wayne Barnes and Nigel Owens selected for their fourth consecutive World Cups as referees.

Luke Pearce, Mathieu Raynal, Ben O’Keeffe, Nic Berry and Angus Gardner have all been named for their World Cup debuts.

France has the most referees included, with Jérôme GarcèsRomain Poite, Pascal Gaüzère, Mathieu Raynal all selected. 

Brace, a native of Wales who moved to Ireland in 2010, has been in charge of eight Tests as the main referee, as well as acting as an assistant referee in 19 others.

Formerly a player with Old Crescent RFC and a Belgium international, Brace was awarded a professional refereeing contract by the IRFU in 2017.

He has refereed in the Challenge Cup and Champions Cup, as well as serving as an assistant referee in the Six Nations and Rugby Championship. 

Match officials for 2019 Rugby World Cup:

Referees (12): Wayne Barnes (England)Luke Pearce (England), Jérôme Garcès (France)Romain Poite (France)Pascal Gaüzère (France)Mathieu Raynal (France)Nigel Owens (Wales)Jaco Peyper (South Africa)Ben O’Keeffe (New Zealand)Paul Williams (New Zealand)Nic Berry (Australia) and Angus Gardner (Australia)

Assistant referees (seven): Matthew Carley (England, reserve referee), Karl Dickson (England), Andrew Brace (Ireland), Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand), Federico Anselmi (Argentina), Shuhei Kubo (Japan) and Alex Ruiz (France)

TMOs (four): Graham Hughes (England), Rowan Kitt (England), Ben Skeen (New Zealand) and Marius Jonker (South Africa).

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Murray Kinsella

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