Sutton, Klein to Officiate Origin I
Gerard Sutton and Ashley Klein will referee Game One of the 2018 State of Origin series at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Wednesday, 6 June.
Nick Beashel and Brett Suttor will be touch judges for the match, while Steve Chiddy (Senior Review Official) and Ben Galea (Review Official) will operate the NRL Bunker.
Sutton has officiated in the past 10 State of Origin matches, while Klein refereed in the 2013 series.
The selections were made by the referees appointments committee, which includes Senior Manager Officiating Bernard Sutton, Officiating Head Coach Michael Maguire and Assistant Referees Coaches Russell Smith and Steve Carrall.
“We took into account form, consistency and experience when nominating the officiating group,” Bernard Sutton said.
“Both the referees have been in excellent form over the opening rounds of the season and will take that form into the opening Origin game.”
NRL Head of Football Brian Canavan said Sutton and Klein deserved to referee the opening Origin encounter.
“Gerard has refereed in three NRL Grand Finals, last year’s World Cup Final, as well as every Origin match since Game Three of 2014,” Canavan said.
“Ashley has refereed three Super League Grand Finals, a Challenge Cup Final as well as a World Cup final.
“They are the form referees and clearly have big-game experience. I congratulate all the officials on their appointments.”
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The match officials for the first Holden State of Origin match, on 6 June, are:
Referee: Gerard Sutton
Assist Referee: Ashley Klein
Senior Review Official: Steve Chiddy
Review Official: Ben Galea
Touch Judges: Nick Beashel, Brett Suttor
Standby Referee: Ben Cummins
Standby Touch Judge: Chris Butler