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Marlize makes news in Rio

Tue, 26 Feb 2013 08:18
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Marlize’s achievement is one to celebrate for the entire South African rugby fraternity
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Marlize Jordaan of the Free State Referees' Society, made news in Rio de Janeiro last weekend.

CONSUR, the body which organises South American rugby, ran two Sevens tournaments at the Club Regatas do Flamengo in steamy Rio, one for men and one for women, both qualifying tournaments for the Sevens World Cups in Moscow in midyear.

Marlize was appointed as a referee at the women's event but, based on her performance, she was appointed to the play-off match between Peru and Paraguay, won 14-7 by Peru, in the men's tournament. She became the first woman to referee a men's match in South America.

Argentina won the men's tournament, beating Uruguay in the final. Both countries qualify for Moscow.

Up for grabs in the women's tournament was the 16th place in Moscow. This went to Brazil who won the tournament for the ninth consecutive time, beating Argentina 27-14 in the Final.

According to Bernd Gabbei, Referee Development Consultant for the International Rugby Board, Marlize’s appointment for the match between Peru and Paraguay, was based on merit after a few superb performances in the women’s tournament, which was taking place at the same time.

André Watson, SARU General Manager: Referees, said Marlize’s achievement is one to celebrate for the entire South African rugby fraternity.

Watson said: “It’s not that common for women to referee in men’s matches, but Marlize has grown so much in her career as a referee, that we weren’t surprised when we were told of her appointment.

“Last week Marlize refereed the Varsity Cup Young Guns match between the Under-20 teams of Kovsies and UP-Tuks, and was very good. In 2012, she also handled two matches in the Under-19B Tournament with great aplomb. We’re really expecting big things from her and are very proud of her achievement in South America.”

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