The latest round of financial cuts at the RFU has hit the referees’ department with JP Doyle being made redundant.
The 41-year-old, who learned his fate last week, had been officiating in the Premiership since 2006 as well as on the international stage, including the 2015 Rugby World Cup.
WHAT?!— RugbyInsideLine (@RugbyInsideLine) August 20, 2020
He was the best ref by absolute miles!
Tended to have the lowest penalty count, had respect from the players and let the games flow without them being scrappy and free-for-alls.
Not often you can say you’re gutted about a ref leaving the game.https://t.co/HkjyvXFS9r
He was one of the 10 full-time referees on the RFU’s elite list, who were all informed last week of a pending round of redundancy and that all of their jobs were at risk.
The Irishman, who was one of the higher paid officials, was then informed a few days later that he was to be made redundant.
However, according to RUCK sources, Doyle has already received a significant interest with the whistleblower set to have ‘a chat’ with the IRFU about a potential move.
There’s also reportedly been contact from France and Japan.
ID YOU KNOW? He played scrum-half for Terenure College (school), Terenure College RFC and St Mary’s University College, Twickenham where he trained to be a secondary school teacher
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LIST: Rugby’s 5 Most Controversial Refereeing Decisions
1. Speargate on the Lions Tour
The first game of the Lions tour of New Zealand was swept into controversy following a horrific spear tackle on Captain Brian O’Driscoll, which ended his tour within minutes. The tackle, with O’Driscoll picked up by two players in the ruck, was against the rules, but the ref waved play on.
The moment caused a major knock-on effect in World Rugby, tightening up restrictions on spear tackling.