22 Oct 2015

Owens favourite to ref World Cup final

11:40 am on 22 October 2015

Welshman Nigel Owens is favourite to be named as referee the Rugby World Cup final following the appointments of Frenchman Jerome Garces and England's Wayne Barnes for the semi-finals.

Welsh rugby referee Nigel Owens

Welsh rugby referee Nigel Owens Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Owens has been an international referee since 2005 and the 44-year-old officiated at the 2007 and 2011 World Cups. He took charge of this year's quarter-final between New Zealand and France.

Frenchman Garces will referee the All Blacks semi-final against the Springboks at Twickenham on Sunday morning and Barnes will be in charge of the Australia-Argentina semi on Monday morning.

The officials will be under even more pressure than usual following the controversy surrounding South African Craig Joubert's decision to award Australia a late penalty which sealed their 35-34 win over Scotland in the quarter-finals.

Organisers took the unusual step of announcing publicly that Joubert had made the wrong call and should have awarded the Wallabies a scrum.

- Reuters

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