Rugby union referee nominated for WA Sports Star Award

Tyler Miller (Joondalup). Picture: Martin Kennealey www.communitypix.com.au   d490074
Tyler Miller (Joondalup). Picture: Martin Kennealey www.communitypix.com.au d490074

UWA student and rugby union referee Tyler Miller became the first West Australian to represent Australia as an official at the Women’s 7s World Series in Paris last year.

The 24-year-old psychology student also became the first female assistant referee at a senior male level when she took to the sidelines for the Western Force’s games in the World Series 15s against Hong Kong.

These achievements have earned her a nomination for Official of the Year in the WA Sports Star Awards that will be announced on February 7.

Miller started refereeing rugby union when her playing career was cut short because of a lack of opportunities for female players.

“I started playing junior rugby and it was a mixed competition until under-12s but after that there was no league for girls so I started refereeing,” she said.

“It’s changed now but there wasn’t an option for me back then.”

Miller said officiating the World Series in Paris was “hectic” and her biggest event to date while the Western Force games had her refereeing in front of big crowds.

“I was nervous but the crowds are part and parcel of the game, it’s part of the atmosphere and just becomes white noise,” she said.

Miller said she enjoyed the mental and physical challenges of refereeing.

“There’s something new everyday and I get to travel the world with my friends,” she said.

Miller, who trains four times a week, will officiate at competitions in Sydney in early February, Japan in April and Canada in May.

Ultimately, she wants to referee at the Tokyo Olympics in 2020 and at the Rugby World Cup.