Wayne Barnes is an English international rugby union referee and barrister. He is a regular referee in the English Premiership, and has refereed games in the Heineken Cup and the European Challenge Cup. At international level, Barnes has refereed matches at the Rugby World Cup, the Six Nations, the Rugby Championship and the Pacific Nations Cup competitions.
Barnes started playing rugby at the age of eight, and took up refereeing aged 15 with Gloucester & District Referees. At university he transferred to the London Society of RFU Referees. In 2001, at the age of 21, Barnes became the youngest referee ever appointed to the Panel of National Referees. He became a professional referee in April 2005.
Barnes refereed at the 2003 U19 World Cup in Saint-Denis, the 2005 Under 21 Rugby World Championship in Argentina, and was the English representative on the Sevens circuit from December 2003 to March 2005 he also played for Leicester in 2005 as a substitute at number 9. In 2006, Barnes made his Test debut as a referee, taking charge of three matches in the inaugural Pacific Five Nations.
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