Ben Thaler appointed ref for England v France

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Super League Grand Final referee Ben Thaler and Australian referee Gerard Sutton will officiate game one and game two of the International Series between England and New Zealand.

Thaler, who refereed this year’s First Utility Super League Grand Final, has been awarded game one of the series at the KC Stadium, Hull, on Sunday November 1.

Ben refereed the Challenge Cup final and the Grand Final this year as a reward for his consistency throughout the season and has previous international experience during the Rugby League World Cup in 2013

Refs boss Steve Ganson

Sutton, who was in the middle for the all-Queensland NRL decider, will take charge of the second game on Saturday November 7 at the Olympic Stadium, London.

An appointments panel will review the performances of Thaler and Sutton to determine who will officiate the series’ climax at the DW Stadium, Wigan, on Saturday November 14.

The panel consisting of St Helens-born and bred: Steve Ganson, Chairman of the Match Officials Appointment Panel; Luke Watts, the New Zealand National Referee Development Officer; and Thierry Alibert, Head of Match Officials, France.

Ganson said: “We are delighted with the two referees we have appointed - both are very experienced referees to take charge of the International Series.

“Ben refereed the Challenge Cup final and the Grand Final this year as a reward for his consistency throughout the season and has previous international experience during the Rugby League World Cup in 2013.

“Gerard is another referee who has bags of experience on the international stage, in Grand Finals and also State of Origin matches in Australia. I'm sure both will make it a difficult decision for the panel to determine the referee for the final game.”

The three-game series against New Zealand starts at the KC Stadium, Hull, on Sunday November 1 (5pm).

Game two will be held at The Stadium at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London, onSaturday November 7 (2.30pm). The series concludes at the DW Stadium, Wigan, on Saturday, November 14 (1pm).

Tickets for all three games of the International Series are being snapped up with more than 15,000 already sold for the first game at Hull, more than 30,000 for game two in London and more than 13,000 for the clash at Wigan.

England’s international schedule kicks off at Leigh Sports Village on Saturday, October 24 (2pm) in an International against France.

Tickets for England v France at Leigh Sports Village on Saturday October 24 cost

from as little as £10 for adults, £5 for concessions and £22.50 for a family ticket. To purchase tickets, please visitwww.rugbyleaguetickets.co.uk or call the Rugby League Ticket Hotline on 0844 856 1113.

Tickets to the three-game International Series against New Zealand cost from £22 for adults and £10 for concessions per game.

A three-match package costing from just £45 for adults and £22.50 for concessions is also

available. To purchase tickets, please visit www.rugbyleaguetickets.co.uk or call the Rugby League Ticket Hotline on 0844 856 1113.