Can­ter­bury ref in charge of Lo­chore fi­nal

Christchurch Mail - - HEALTH AND WELLBEING - KIM NUTBROWN

Can­ter­bury rugby ref­eree James Munro will cap off a suc­cess­ful sea­son in the mid­dle when he ref­er­ees the fi­nal of the Lo­chore Cup in the Mitre 10 Heart­land Cham­pi­onship.

Munro, who started ref­er­ee­ing when he was in high school said it’s a sat­is­fy­ing feel­ing be­ing given the fi­nal af­ter what he de­scribes as a ‘‘pretty big year.’’

Munro made his de­but in Heart­land rugby in 2011, but fol­low­ing the earthquakes he and a friend de­cided to take some time out of the city on an OE to Lon­don.

He said al­though it was a risk to leave given he had just made Heart­land, it was prob­a­bly one of the best de­ci­sions he’s made.

‘‘We ended up spend­ing three years there which was a great ex­pe­ri­ence and I met my now fi­ancee Caitlin be­fore com­ing home.

‘‘I came home a lit­tle more grown up and ma­ture and had a dif­fer­ent out­look and ap­proach to be­ing a ref­eree.’’

Fast for­ward a few years and Munro is back, pick­ing up where he left off.

His big year also in­cludes a Mitre 10 Cup de­but at Forsyth Barr Sta­dium in Dunedin for Otago v Manawatu.

‘‘That came a lit­tle quicker than ex­pected on my re­turn from Lon­don.

‘‘My fa­ther, Andy, played for Can­ter­bury back in the 80s and whilst not be­ing able to repli­cate that as a player, it has al­ways driven me to get to that level as a ref­eree.

‘‘So it was a pretty proud mo­ment to share a beer in the shed af­ter­wards with the fam­ily.’’

Munro said the in­ten­sity and pres­sure is al­ways go­ing to be a lit­tle greater for a fi­nal.

‘‘I am pretty rou­tine-driven dur­ing the week so noth­ing will change with my prepa­ra­tion.

‘‘Just like the play­ers, where

‘‘So it will be a good cof­fee and some eggs on game day and we will be ready to roll’’

you go out and try to do some­thing is most likely where you fail to per­form and you’ll be sit­ting there scratch­ing your head af­ter­wards.

‘‘So it will be a good cof­fee and some eggs on game day and we will be ready to roll.’’

Fel­low Can­ter­bury ref­eree Shel­don Eden-Whaitiri will be the TMO in the Lo­chore Cup fi­nal.

The Lo­chore Cup fi­nal is be­tween West Coast and Mid Can­ter­bury in Methven on Sun­day at 2:30pm.

KERRY MAR­SHALL

Can­ter­bury ref­eree James Munro will of­fi­ci­ate the fi­nal of the Lo­chore Cup in Methven on Sun­day.

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