Queensland referees Damon Murphy and Jordan Way are two of three referees who have been included in the World Rugby panels for the 2016-2017 HSBC Sevens Series for the Men’s and Women’s competitions.
Murphy, a former Australian Sevens and Reds A representative who played 155 Premier Grade games for Brothers in BLK Queensland Premier Rugby, only recently began referring and his rapid elevation through the ranks is testament to the opportunities on offer for former players who chose to take up the whistle.
Murphy represented Australia in Sevens from 2004-2006 including on home turf at the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne.
Way, originally from the Gold Coast where he played junior Rugby for the Casuarina Barbarians, began his refereeing journey in Cairns where he moved with his family while in senior school.
A talented player in his own right, Way played in the outside backs for his school St. Augustine’s and club Barron Trinity Bulls, as well as for the junior representative Far North Queensland side.
A broken collar bone in his final year of school saw him sidelined, but his mother, a passionate Rugby fan, made sure he wasn’t going to stay away from the game for too long.
“I first started refereeing as part of the Far North Queensland referee academy. A broken collar bone meant I wasn’t playing but my mum gave me a bit of a revving and said I needed to give back to the game,” he said.
"From there I joined the academy and began officiating matches. I wasn’t a big fan of it at first but I stuck with it and I’m glad I did.”
The pair will be joined by leading Australian female Amy Perrett alongside a promising young talent in the refereeing ranks, Jordan Way.
Amy Perrett’s selection of the Women’s Panel comes off the back of the performances at the 2016 Rio Olympic Games where she was one of two Aussies selected to be match officials.
ARU Head of Referees Scott Young: “We are very proud to have three referees representing Australian Rugby on the field in the upcoming HSBC Sevens World Series.
“Damon and Jordan are excellent products of our refereeing pathway and have a strong future with the whistle in hand.
“Damon has come through our player pathway and Jordan commenced his refereeing at age 16 in Cairns as part of our school scholarship program”.
All three officials have also refereed in this year’s Buildcorp NRC.
The HSBC Sevens World Series for Men and Women kick off in early December.