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Call it like it is

The world of the international rugby referee has always been a closely guarded secret . . . until now. As a Durban schoolboy, Jonathan Kaplan watched rugby at Kings Park every Saturday, dreaming of the day he would represent his country. Now, three decades later and at the age of 47, he reflects on the career highs and lows that saw him retire as the most capped international, Super Rugby and Currie Cup referee of all time. But records and milestones are just a part of an intriguing memoir that affords the reader a rare glimpse into the world of international refereeing . . . and what lies behind that enigmatic, penetrating glare that is as typical of Jonathan Kaplan as his silver-grey patch of hair. In Call It Like It Is, Kaplan describes exactly what it takes to be an international rugby referee: his gradual climb to the top, the sacrifices he had to make in his personal life, his struggle with injuries and rugby management, the toll an itinerant lifestyle exacted upon him, and much, much more. But this is not only an autobiography: Kaplan also offers his opinion on the role of technology in rugby, dissects his own successes and failures, debates the selection and assessment of referees, and, yes, gives his take on the 2011 Rugby World Cup and the Bryce Lawrence affair. Containing all the guts and glory you'd expect from an epic rugby tale, this is also the frank and forthright account of a man who, both in life and on the pitch, would only ever call it like it is.
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About the Author

Jonathan Kaplan is the world's most capped Test referee. He's also the only ref in the world to have blown over 100 Super Rugby matches. Add more than 150 Currie Cup matches, including six finals, three Super Rugby finals and four Rugby World Cup tournaments, and you have one serious CV. He lives in Cape Town with his bulldogs Lola and Dexter. Mike Behr has been a newspaper journalist and magazine features writer for local and international titles for just over three decades. He won the Mondi Award in 2004 for his exclusive and revealing profile of former Bok wing Ashwin Willemse, published in Sports Illustrated magazine. This is the Capetonian's first book.

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