a Rochelais among the referees of the Top 14 final

Former winger of the first team from 1979 to 1985, pure product of the school of rugby, international A’ in 1983, Didier Morin swapped the ball for the whistle a long time ago, before becoming responsible for the appointment of referees in the Poitou-Charentes committee. For six years, the Rochelais has also been a federal representative during Top 14 and Pro D2 matches, which is also called the match delegate.

“It’s about making sure everything around the pitch is legal. Two hours before kick-off, I remove the premises, security, the medical part, the match sheet and the players’ licenses. During the match, I control the stopping of time ordered by the central referee, in connection with the realization of Canal+, the time imposed on the striker to hit, 60 seconds for a tolerance, 90 seconds for a transformation. After the match, I make my report, all data is sent to the League [nationale de rugby]. »

“I wouldn’t want to get angry with him. [Jean-Baptiste Elissalde], I made him jump on my knees when he was little! »

Didier Morin has reached the age limit imposed to practice, 65 years old. As a “beautiful gift” of departure, his colleagues offered him a trip to Paris, not to attend the final of the French championship as a spectator but to officiate, alongside the Varois Tual Tranini, appointed by the Selection Committee. “He has a funny background. He is not a professional referee, he is semi-pro and works on the side at Airbus Helicopters in Marignane. It’s rare these days in top-level rugby, but he’s a great referee. »

Discount of jerseys

Like those whose discussions they direct, the arbitrators form a real team. Mr. Tranini will be surrounded by two assistant referees along the sideline, three referees near the substitutes’ bench, the video referee, a supervisor and two federal officials, including Didier Morin. “I will be either in the stands or on the sidelines,” said the latter, who will attend, as is done between players before a big match, “the delivery of the jerseys”. “The referees who have refereed a Top 14 final are used to meeting before the match to hand over the jerseys. It’s a tradition. We will do that on Thursday evening, the day before the final. »

Didier Morin reports after each game. All data is sent to the National Rugby League.


If he is present on the edge of the field on Friday evening, Didier Morin will try not to drag on the side of the Montpellier bench. “I was already next to Jean-Baptiste Elissalde during Clermont – Montpellier, he was quite tense. I wouldn’t want to get angry with him, I made him jump on my lap when he was little! “, smiles the former teammate of Jean-Pierre Elissalde, father of Jean-Baptiste.

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