Super League’s Klein joins NRL refs

Ashley Klein NRL RefereeLeading Super League and International referee Ashley Klein, has quit his post in the UK and will join the NRL ranks for 2009 in Australia.

Klein, 29, will now be able to link up with his wife and 2 kids in Australia and will challenge for top spot in the NRL referee ranks.

The timing is ideal for the NRL, with several leading referees walking away in recent years and only a couple of current whistleblowers showing true consistentcy.

Not only will there be new referees on deck for 2009; the introduction of dual officials on field will no doubt take time to bed down as coaches and teams adjust to the more stricter governance. While most believe the 2nd referee will speed the game up, forcing players of the tackled man quicker – the introduction of Klein will be an interesting one.

Klein seemingly referees in a similar style of Bill Harrigan; he allows the game to flow but is still able to keep control of the players. His form at international level was impressive and he should quickly develop into one of the top 3 referees in the NRL. His style is totally contrasting to locals referee’s such as Ben Cummins who will at times over-officiate a game to the point where players and spectators are driven crazy.

European RFL referees’ chief Stuart Cummings paid tribute to Klein, saying in a statement Tuesday: “Ashley has had a very difficult decision to make but has understandably decided to join his family in Australia.

“Therefore, we have decided it is in the best interests of all parties concerned to accept his resignation with immediate affect.

“We understand that following the announcement last week that his family wish to stay in Australia that the NRL has subsequently offered him a position in their competition.”Cummings, paying tribute to Klein, said in a statement Tuesday: “Ashley has had a very difficult decision to make but has understandably decided to join his family in Australia.

“Therefore, we have decided it is in the best interests of all parties concerned to accept his resignation with immediate affect.

“We understand that following the announcement last week that his family wish to stay in Australia that the NRL has subsequently offered him a position in their competition.”

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