Top Whistlers Rewarded

The Navy referees took the opportunity of the Combined Services Rugby Referees biannual dinner to present this season’s awards for Referee & Newcomer of the Year. The Admiral Royds Trophy for Referee of the Year was presented to Cdr Andy Coles. Andy has had an outstanding season refereeing both within Service rugby and in his home county society of Devon. As a newly promoted level 6 referee at the start of the season he has more than just consolidated within the grade, he has refereed at a consistently high level at this grade by taking on such games as the South African Defence Force. His season was completed when he gained his Royal Navy Colours by officiating at this years RAF v Army Inter Services. Commenting on his award Andy said “ it’s an honour to win an award which has so many esteemed previous winners and has with the presentation of my colours made this a memorable season”. Lt Cdr Matt Kiernan QARNNS was awarded the Newcomer of the Year trophy, Matt completed the Entry Level Referees Award (ELRA) prior to Christmas and wasted no time in getting involved with not only Service Rugby but also with his civilian society of Hampshire. He has used is background of a player and a coach to display an empathy of to the game that is unusual for a referee of so little experience in the middle. Matt was clearly surprised at receiving an award at such an early stage of his refereeing career he said “I have had an amazing first year as a referee and this is the icing on the cake, I hope to continue my development and become a better referee next season”. Matt will no doubt hope to emulate the achievements of Andy Coles who was a previous winner of the Society's Newcomer of the Year award. The picture shows Matt (left) and Andy (right) receiving their awards from Society Chairman Cdr Stew Kilby RN.