Robert Finch has formally announced his resignation as the referees boss after previous speculation that he was set to be sacked.

Finch, who has won two premierships in his time as a player for St George has held the position for 8 years and states that now is the time for him to “explore new challenges”.

“I have had the opportunity to consider the road ahead personally and have decided that as much as I love working with the referees and the clubs, I have reached the point where I need new challenges,” Finch said in a statement on Wednesday.

“There are still plenty of things I want to do in my career and this is the time to explore some of those options.”

In a year where the referees found themselves in the firing line from many fans, the option of Finch resigning first came around in September after the grand final, given recent controversial decisions throughout the season.

Finch only has two weeks left in the top job, as his tenure will officially end upon the completion of the Four Nations final.

Whilst there has been much speculation about his replacement, the NRL refuse to buy into that speculation, though it is believed that Greg McCallum is the favourite.

Former referees Bill Harrigan and Steven Clark are also believed to be in the mix for the job.

Finch has received nothing but praise from NRL Chief Executive for his influence on the reffing community as they went through the changing of the guard from 1 referee to 2.

“Being in charge of referees is a thankless task at times but anyone who looks back at Robert’s contribution to refereeing can’t fail to acknowledge the positive changes that he has driven in the game,” Gallop said.

“Finchy’s passion for the game and his experience in so many areas helped him drive the level of professionalism in refereeing to a new level and he is to be congratulated on that achievement.”

By ricky

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