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The NRL Referees have taken up the challenge issued by Rugby League fans and losing coaches over generations – they have had their eyes tested at OPSM.
Now, through a new partnership with OPSM, Harvey Norman State of Origin referees Tony Archer and Shayne Hayne have joined the NRL in urging coaches, fans and all Australians to do the same.
More than two million domestic viewers will see Wednesday night’s State of Origin match at ANZ Stadium and many will be among the 1.5million Australians facing eye health issues.
As the Official Eye Care Provider of the NRL, OPSM will appear on the sleeve of referees’ jerseys in NRL and representative matches as part of a campaign to educate fans about the need to have their eyes fully tested every two years.
The partnership will also support disadvantaged communities in Australia and overseas, with Rugby League fans asked to donate their old prescription glasses for recycling overseas and to donate funds to support Australian eye clinics through the OneSight Foundation during the Telstra Premiership’s ‘Close the Gap’ Round (Round 24).
“This is a sponsorship that has benefits for the game and the community by highlighting the importance of eye health and eye care,” NRL Chief Executive, Mr David Gallop, said.
“There are always going to be the odd ‘digs’ about referees needing to get their eyes tested but the truth is that many of the people who are watching the game really do need to seek attention from OPSM.
“While the referees have long since learned to take jokes about OPSM in their stride, it is not something that people can afford to laugh about when it is their own eyesight.
“Importantly, the NRL Referees have gone about this partnership in the right spirit and, for the record, the eyesight of the squad came through with flying colours.
“But all the referees recognise the role the sponsorship can play in urging all Australians to look after their eyes and to undergo testing every two years.”
To help Rugby League fans understand the importance of eye care, OPSM will conduct eye screening tests at selected Telstra Premiership and representative matches as well as challenging fans to read a scoreboard from a three-metre distance and pass a football through a 20/20 vision target.
“Anecdotal feedback from OPSM customers indicates that in many cases, the impact of poor or deteriorating vision on the ability to watch football and see the scoreboard is what motivates them to visit an optometrist,” OPSM spokesperson, Ms Anthea Muir, said.
“We see this new partnership with Rugby League as an innovative way to educate millions of Australians about the importance of taking care of their eyes and are excited to be working with the NRL.”
“The partnership will also give Rugby League fans the opportunity to help improve eye care in disadvantaged communities, through OneSight, a not-for-profit vision care program.”

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