Rugby referee Nigel Owens is among the Welsh people who have been recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list.

The 44-year-old, who takes charge of a record 71st test match on Saturday, has been awarded an MBE for services to sport.

He said he was “very humbled and honoured” and he “would never have a year like this again”.


This year’s Birthday Honours coincide with the Queen’s official 90th birthday.

Owens, from Mynyddcerrig, Carmarthenshire, began officiating as a teenager and quickly progressed to be a professional referee.

He made his Rugby World Cup debut in France in 2007 and took charge of the 2015 Rugby World Cup final.

The same year he was awarded the title of World Rugby’s referee of the year.

Off the pitch, he is patron of the Bullies Out charity in Wales.

Speaking to BBC Wales from Fiji, he said the MBE was a “real privilege.”