The decision to appoint Belinda Sharpe as a referee for Thursday's NRL clash between Brisbane and Canterbury has been welcomed by Broncos veteran Andrew McCullough.
The hooker will be playing in his 250th NRL match but it will be Belinda Sharpe's debut as a first-grade referee which will mark the occasion in rugby league history.
Sharpe's appointment will make her the first woman referee in the 111-year history of professional rugby league.
It's a decision McCullough couldn't be more happy to see.
"Congratulations to her and just shows the development of the game of rugby league has come a long way," the 29-year-old said.
"I hope she's excited. She should be. That's quite an achievement and something she should be very proud of."
Sharpe's elevation comes after she was appointed as an NRL touch judge in 2014 and performed that role during the World Cup in 2017.
A former Queensland Cup referee, Sharpe was also in charge for a Broncos' trial match against Wynnum-Manly in February.
"I don't think she'd be overawed by it all, she wouldn't be getting the job if she wasn't capable of it," McCullough said.
Australian Associated Press