Maxwell appointed new NRL referees' boss

Jared Maxwell was announced as the new man in charge of the NRL referees.
Jared Maxwell was announced as the new man in charge of the NRL referees.

Jared Maxwell will take on the NRL's toughest job as the game's referees' boss.

The NRL confirmed on Wednesday that Maxwell would replace Bernard Sutton in the role, after more than 275 NRL games, State of Origins and Test matches.

But this could potentially be his toughest appointment.

Since Robert Finch stepped down at the end of 2010 after eight years at the helm, no less than five people have overseen the referees.

Bill Harrigan and Stuart Raper shared the role until they were sacked at the end of 2012, while Daniel Anderson maintained it for the 2013 season only.

Tony Archer then had five years at the top until he was axed, while Sutton's two years in charge have often been filled with drama.

Head of football Graham Annesley backed Maxwell to take over elite officiating and bunker operations.

"Jared was a leading referee for over a decade, then transitioned to coaching second-tier referees," Annesley said.

"(He was appointed bunker manager last year and becoming a member of the match officials' appointments committee.

"Jared knows our referees well and the referees know Jared well.

"He understands the game and its clubs, but importantly has some innovative ideas to enhance the way our match officials prepare for a game."

Maxwell will be met with an immediate challenge, given the raft of rule changes announced this month and confirmation the one-referee system will stay.

"It's an honour to be appointed to such an important role," he said.

"Our match officials did an outstanding job last year adapting to the new rules and I'm looking forward to taking that to the next level in the 2021 season.

"We all want to see fast, entertaining rugby league and I'll work closely with all officials to ensure the players are given every opportunity to achieve that."

Australian Associated Press