Young rugby players watched in horror after a referee collapsed and died yesterday.
Peter Mills, 62, collapsed about 10 minutes into an under-13 club match at Blenheim's Lansdowne Park.
Bystanders and ambulance staff tried resuscitation for about 50 minutes but were unable to revive Mill.
Tasman and Buller Rugby Union referee education officer Nigel Jones said Mills had been a member of the referee association for more than 20 years.
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Sergeant Jason Munro of Blenheim Police said the death has been referred to the coroner.