A referee can't make a bad game good, but he can make a good game bad.
Based on this assumption, Derek Bevan became one of the world's best - and best known - rugby union referees. He retired at the end of the 1999-2000 season, aged fifty, after a quarter of a century as the man in the middle. During that long career he refereed in all four World Cups, including the 1991 World Cup Final; almost 50 internationals, four Welsh Cup Finals, World Cup Sevens, Hong Kong Sevens, Dubai Sevens and the Students' World Cup Final.
Forced to stop playing by an industrial accident - he'd been sent off three times as 'an aggressive flanker' - his love for rugby turned Bevan to refereeing and brought a prominence that he would never have achieved as a player. He saw huge changes in the game: player professionalism in terms of money and on-field attitude; world cups; the growing importance of the smaller nations; television money; the development of the IRB and national Unions; rule changes to make the game more popular: in short, a new rugby culture.
In his autobiography Bevan explores the changing game, the great matches, the great players, modern refereeing and the future for referees. He also owns up to a few mistakes and deals honestly with the Louis Luyt affair in a book which charts rugby at international and club level over the last thirty years.