Monday 27 February 2017

Ref chief backs umpires

Cliona Foley

Cliona Foley

NATIONAL Referees' Committee Chairman Mick Curley has already gone on the record this summer to argue that referees should continue to be allowed select their own umpires.

This process came under the spotlight again when umpires at Sunday's All-Ireland semi-final failed to spot that Benny Coulter was in the square before scoring Down's crucial goal.

In the match programme for the Cork/Kilkenny SHC semi-final Curley said: "These lads are with the referee for a number of years before he gets on the national scene at all. The referee trusts them and that is very important.

"It (trust) is absolutely vital and I am talking from experience because down through the years I had a number of lads with me. They knew exactly what to expect from me and I knew exactly what to expect from them.

"I had absolutely no problem turning my back on what was happening behind me because I knew they would watch it and bring it to my attention if anything untoward did happen.

"The criticism that the umpire gets is very unfair in terms of the number of games that they officiate and the job that they do."

Irish Independent

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