Hollie Davidson: Referee makes history with men's international appointment

Scottish rugby referee Hollie Davidson will make history in June when she becomes the first female to officiate a men’s Six Nations team in a Test match.

The former Murrayfield Wanderers and Edinburgh University scrum-half has been appointed to take charge of the Portugal v Italy men’s international on June 25 and then Canada v Belgium on July 2.

She has already refereed one men’s Test, Malta’s 37-10 defeat of Cyprus in the Rugby Europe Conference 1 South in March 2019, but has been handed two men’s matches this year.

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Davidson said: “To be the first woman to referee a men’s Six Nations team is a tremendous honour and an achievement I am proud of.

Hollie Davidson has already refereed several high-profile men's matches this season. Picture: Ross Parker/SNS

“I have been happy with my progress in the last couple of years and working as a full-time professional referee with Scottish Rugby has really helped that.

“I couldn’t believe it when I heard the news as I didn’t think something like this would have happened so quickly in my career but I’m really proud and looking forward to the summer.“In the last year I have been fortunate to have been refereed high profile fixtures in both the men’s and women’s game which will act as great preparation going into the summer for these two matches.”

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Already this season Davidson has refereed three matches in the United Rugby Championship – Glasgow v Edinburgh, Ulster v Cardiff, Ospreys v Munster – along with France v England in the 2022 Women’s Six Nations.

Scottish Rugby performance director Jim Mallinder described Davidson as a “pioneer” for female refereeing.