Evelyn George has been refereeing for over 30 years. She started in 1993 in Newcastle after being inspired by the 1991 England World Cup to pick up the whistle. At the time, there were no opportunities for Women to play Rugby. In 2000, she relocated to Southern Inland
where she started playing and refereeing. Evelyn would play a full game, run up to the change rooms, grab the whistle, swap shirts, and then run on to referee a full match. She didn’t care about being the only female Match Official in the zone - she didn’t know any better and all the members loved and treated her like one of their own. The appointments were always based on skill and performance, rather than gender, and they supported both her playing ambitions and refereeing goals.
Over her 11 years in SIRU as a Match Official, Evelyn saw the Women’s game grow. The Women’s club competition was strong during the early 2000’s, although unfortunately came to a standstill in 2003. Despite this gap in the club competition, the region continued to see a rise in women lacing up the boots, with schoolgirls teams and school programs taking off.
Evelyn’s favourite rugby moments include being appointed by Rugby Australia to referee at the Central Coast 7s and Darwin’s Hottest 7s competitions. Despite her high achievements, what means the most to Evelyn is that every Saturday she gets to turn up to Rugby. The teams are happy to have her as their ref and who thank her at the end of each game for a great job. To her, that is the best part about refereeing, and she would encourage everyone to give it a go.
Below are some of her favourite pictures.
Young vs Hay (2006
Gold Coast Women's 7s (2013)
CWRU Women's GF (2016)
Country Week (2018)
Coolah vs Yeoval (2018)
Bathurst Bulldogs vs CSU Women (2019)