HM NAVAL Base Clyde recently put Scottish rugby referees through a tough physical test ahead of the new season.

The event, which was aimed at promoting team building and communication, was held on Friday, July 28, and was the latest in a series of training opportunities between the Naval Base and Scottish Rugby Union’s governing body.

Commander Dunx McClement of HM Naval Base Clyde, himself a rugby referee, extended the invitation to the match officials who were hosted by Physical Training Instructors and members of 43 Commando Fleet Protection Group.

“To be a successful rugby referee, physical fitness and good communication skills are vital,” he said.

“We were delighted to host the officials at HM Naval Base Clyde and to use our experience to develop their skills.

“The day took the referees out of both their physical and mental comfort zones with the Royal Navy Physical Trainers and 43 Commando personnel putting them to the test.

"Keith Allen, one of the referees who took part, told me that it was one of the hardest but most rewarding activities that he has done during his time with the Scottish Rugby Elite Panel.”

The match officials split into groups and were taken to the Base' main sporting facility where Royal Navy and Royal Marine Physical Trainers led them in a series of physically punishing circuits while other participants joined Royal Marines from 43 Commando for military skills training and a table-top planning exercise.

Dave Pearson, Scottish Rugby’s high performance referee manager, said: “Being able to draw on the experience of the Royal Navy Physical Trainers and the 43 Commando personnel has been a fantastic opportunity for the referees and will serve them well for the forthcoming season.

“We were able to identify significant parallels from the military environment that will enhance our refereeing performance.”

The group was made up of 12 referees and five support staff and included referees who will officiate in the Guinness PRO12 and EPRC Challenge Cup competitions and on the international circuit for the forthcoming season.