On Saturday night Association Life Member Rickey McFarlane officiated in his 250th NRL match at McDonald Jones Stadium in Newcastle as the Knights took on the Panthers.

Rickey joined the Association as a young 14 year old with his enthusiasm towards learning and advancing through the refereeing ranks prevalent from the very start. After progressing through district ranks he moved on to Junior Representative fixtures then became a member of the NSWRLRA Graded Squad prior to making his NRL debut in Round 26 2008, at Parramatta Stadium where the Eels played the Warriors. Rickey has also officiated in three City v Country fixtures, England v Samoa test match in 2018, 2013 Under 20's State of Origin and the 2013 Under 20's Grand Final. 

Rickey exclusively told Penrith Referees after the game that he was extremely proud to have officiated in so many NRL matches. He stated that he no longer gets as nervous before games as he used to because he is confident in his ability and his weekly preparation. A tight game throughout made it an interesting match with Penrith walking away two point victors, Rickey spoke of how tight games like this makes every movement and decision pivotal to the end result but he wouldn't have it any other way. Like any match official he is aware that there is always room for improvement and new things to be learned, even if you have done 250 NRL matches and countless others on your way to that point!

Association Chairman, Gary Haines offered his congratulations on behalf of the Board of Management and all members. "This is a wonderful personal achievement for Rickey who has worked extremely hard during his career and particularly over the past 12 years in the NRL. He has never forgotten his roots and regularly helps out the young referees coming through park footy just the same as he did all those years ago".