Top referee Pierluigi Collina will be allowed to carry on in domestic football for another year, the Italian football federation has confirmed.
Collina has been a referee for 28 years
Collina, 45, was due to retire this summer, but the sport's authorities have agreed to raise the maximum age for officials to 46.
The distinctive bald-headed referee can now handle Italian league and Champions League matches up to 30 June next year.
But he will be ruled out of officiating at the 2006 World Cup.
Collina has been voted world referee of the year five times and has been a referee for 28 years.
The pinnacle of his career was when he officiated at the 2002 World Cup final between Brazil and Germany.