Nigel Owens has ranked the three ‘toughest’ and ‘most awkward’ England players to referee during his sensational career.
The popular Welshman announced his retirement from international rugby last November after taking charge of 100 Test matches.
He’s now stepped back from professional refereeing all together to concentrate on his other businesses.
One of the teams he’s refereed most during his stellar career is England, with Owens having a famously funny run in with former England captain Chris Robshaw.
See below, who he ranked as the toughest to officiate.
DID YOU KNOW? Nigel Owens first game was an under-15s match between Carmarthen and Pembrokeshire at the age of 16
Nigel Owens ranks the three hardest English players to referee
3. Maro Itoje
NIGEL OWENS SAID: “The second-row is someone who plays right on the edge. That is what makes him such a great player. He must be so difficult to play against but he’s also difficult to referee and I mean that with the utmost respect.”
“You don’t want him to change the way he plays but he needs to pick and choose when he gambles on the situation and when he doesn’t. And understand better those moments when you are under pressure and knowing when, if you take a risk and get it wrong, you will land your team in real trouble.”