Australian Gardner and New Zealander O’Keefe in…

Australian Gardner and New Zealander O’Keefe in…

The International Rugby Union announced on Tuesday that Australian Angus Gardner and New Zealander Ben O’Keefe will respectively referee the 2023 World Cup semi-finals, Argentina-New Zealand on Friday, and England-South Africa on Saturday.

The International Rugby Union announced on Tuesday that Australian Angus Gardner and New Zealander Ben O’Keefe will respectively referee the 2023 World Cup semi-finals, Argentina-New Zealand on Friday, and England-South Africa on Saturday.

Some of the decisions of O’Keeffe, who led the quarter-final match between France and South Africa on Sunday, were questioned by the French players, starting with their captain Antoine Dupont, in a press conference after the defeat to the Blues (29-28). Who “wasn’t sure the referee was up to the challenge.”

This is the first time in their careers that Gardner (39) and O’Keefe (34) have officiated in a World Cup semi-final.

But both officials know which countries they will be leading this weekend.

The Australian officiated five matches between Argentina and New Zealand during his career, including the historic victory achieved by the Pumas in New Zealand (25-15) in November 2020.

Australian referee Angus Gardner looks at the giant screen during the Italy-Uruguay Rugby World Cup group stage match at Nice, France, September 20, 2023.

Nicholas Tokat – AFP

The New Zealander will officiate the England-South Africa match for the second time after the Springboks’ 42-39 win in June 2018.

World Rugby also confirmed that South African referee Jaco Pepper (South Africa), who injured his calf and was substituted during the quarter-final match between Wales and Argentina in Marseille, will miss the remainder of the competition.

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Argentina faces the All Blacks on Friday at the Stade de France (9:00 p.m.), while the match between England and South Africa will take place the next day, Saturday, at the Stade de France at 9:00 p.m.

AFP / Paris (AFP) / © 2023 AFP

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