Referee Nigel Owens Reveals His Retirement Plans
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Leading Welsh referee Nigel Owens has revealed this year’s Six Nations could very well be his last as he ponders potential retirement from the game. The former World Referee of the Year is still regarded as one of the very best, but feels he could be approaching the end of his decorated career in officiating.
Owens will take charge of England vs France at Twickenham in this year’s Six Nations, with his WRU contract set to expire in May 2020. He’s yet to fully make a decision on whether or not this will be his last Six Nations, and says it depends on him “performing well.”
“I’ll be officiating the Six Nations for my 12th season this year and I’m still excited about it. In fact I’m probably more excited than ever.” Owens wrote in his WalesOnline column.
“I’m down to take charge of England against France at Twickenham, which is always a massive game.”
“I think I’m more excited because it’s leading into a World Cup and it could be my last year of the Six Nations. It could be, I don’t know yet.”
“That depends on me performing well, of course, and the views of the powers-that-be after 2019. At the moment my refereeing contract with the WRU comes to an end at the end of May 2020.”
“So until then, at least, I am going to give it my best as always and enjoy every minute of it.”
While his Six Nations future is unclear, one thing is certain – the Rugby World Cup in Japan later this year will be his last.
“And if I’m lucky enough to be selected, then it will be my last World Cup as a referee. There’s no doubt about that.” Owens added
I will still be refereeing until the end of the season in 2020. What happens after that I don’t know. Will I continue to referee in Wales or the Guinness PRO14… who knows?