January 21, 2020

Belinda Sharpe to become NRL’s first female ref

July 17, 2019
Belinda Sharpe

Belinda Sharpe will become the first female referee in Australia’s National Rugby League on Thursday.

The former newspaper sub-editor, 31, will be in charge of the game between Brisbane Broncos and Canterbury Bulldogs.

Sharpe has been a part-time touch judge in the NRL since 2014 and joined the officials’ full-time squad in April.

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“If my opportunity to get my debut shows other women it’s possible, then that’s a good thing,” she said.

“The opportunities are there for females and for any referee to make it to this level. There are a number of female referees right across the country now, particularly at the grassroots level, which is fantastic to see.”

Last year , the NRL launched an elite women’s league featuring four teams.

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