24 Aug 2019
Aimee Barrett-Theron is back home after her intercontinental refereeing. In the last two months, she has refereed in California (two Tests), Johannesburg, Cape Town and, just last Saturday, Auckland, New Zealand. She is home again and tells us of her Eden Park experience.
I recently travelled to Auckland to referee the Laurie O'Reilly Trophy match between Australia Women and New Zealand Women. This was a double-header at Eden Park with the All Blacks playing the Wallabies for the Bledisloe Cup after the women’s match.
Refereeing a test match at Eden Park was definitely on my bucket list and it was a privilege to be able to serve the game at this historic stadium. The match was very physical and intensely contested in all phases. The first 20 minutes saw each team score a try, and so, despite the previous week’s result [New Zealand won 47-10], I knew both teams were going to put up a massive fight for it. New Zealand ground it out to keep the scoreboard ticking over and eventually pulled away 37-8.
The game was challenging but I loved every minute out there. Credit to the local support who filled up the stands and created an incredible atmosphere.
If this was an indication of the standard of women’s rugby currently, the 2021 World Cup is setting up to be an absolute master class.