Nigel Owens Recalls Hilarious Story From The First Senior Game He Refereed


This is brilliant.

Nigel Owens will be on BBC Radio 4 this weekend and a clip has been released from the show, where he recalls the first senior game he ever took charge of.

The Welshman was asked about the highs and lows of his career and cited his first senior game as one of his highs, but the fact that he was only 16 and couldn’t drive as one of his lows.


He then goes on to describe the game in detail, where he found himself on the away bus getting a lift and awarding them a last minute penalty to win the game.

“The highlights were refereeing the first senior game, the lowlights were I couldn’t drive at 16 years of age, so I told Alan West, he was a wonderful guy, I said look Alan i’m ready to referee now but don’t send me too far because my dad can’t drive more than two or three miles locally, he’s never driven on the dual carriageway.

When my mum was in hospital very ill, my dad drove to see her one night, he was on his own, and he drove down the wrong way of the dual carriageway! So he was very very lucky, so I said don’t take me too far. 

So the first game he sent me to was Tregaron, which was about an hour and a half car drive away. He said don’t worry, I’ve sorted it out, you don’t need a lift to the game you can go with the away team on the bus, which is about five or six miles away.

So I told the bus driver I said look, drop me off now about a half a mile before the club. [I] got off, [went] to the changing room, reffed the game, last minute penalty to the away team, they won 9-6, back to the clubhouse.

Then the captain of the away team goes ‘Nige come on! Bus is ready.’ And as I’m going out to the bus, they’re all in the window to the bus sticking two fingers up and shouting at me!

I could have well finished refereeing!”

Absolutely hilarious from Owens. Thankfully he did’t quit refereeing and has gone on to be one of the greatest officials ever.

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