Wednesday 24 May 2017

Donaghy urges GAA to bring in reviews to get ‘big calls’ right

Call for video refs

Colm Keys

Colm Keys

Kieran Donaghy has called on the GAA to go much further than Hawk Eye technology and review all "big calls" in Gaelic games through constant video interaction.

Donaghy feels all sports are falling down on the big calls that matter most and has urged the GAA to give officials the facility to review decisions during games.

The GAA are due to hear back from Hawk Eye on testing that has been done in recent weeks for score detection only.

But Donaghy believes the trials should be broadened to cover all decisions where there is doubt and is adamant that there is a better way to sort out the controversies that erupt when calls go wrong.

"The biggest thing for the GAA to work on is getting the big calls right," he said at Ulster Bank's championship launch yesterday. "And that's where most sports have problems. In soccer, it's happening weekly. The big calls. The big handball they're missing. It's those ones that they want called right.

"The fouls, they're fine. But it's the big ones that are being missed. The Leinster final last year was a major, major call that shouldn't have happened and it's those ones that leave fans ringing in radio shows for two weeks giving out."

Donaghy, a basketballer of high quality, says reviews work very effectively in the sport in America.

"I'm watching a lot of the NBA play-offs at the moment. When it gets into the last two minutes, they can review any play. The refs review it. If the refs aren't sure -- and rather than just guess -- they come together and look at the tape and say 'actually, that was a wrong call.'

"They're not down about it. They say 'I made a mistake.' If a referee could (go) to an umpire or linesman and review it and have another look at it, I think nobody would mind. It's a delay of 30 seconds. For the amount of time we spend giving out, you would nearly have it sorted there and then."

Irish Independent

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