Monday 21 January 2019

GAA to review HawkEye use following 'ghost goal' controversy in Tipp's draw with Waterford

Referee chief Barrett open to expanding use of technology

Austin Gleeson of Waterford catches the ball in the square - the umpires ruled the ball had crossed the line and awarded the goal
Austin Gleeson of Waterford catches the ball in the square - the umpires ruled the ball had crossed the line and awarded the goal
The GAA's Referees Development Committee chairman Willie Barrett. Photo: Sportsfile
Donnchadh Boyle

Donnchadh Boyle

The GAA's Referees Development Committee chairman Willie Barrett is open to extending the use of HawkEye to include goal-detection technology after the 'ghost goal' controversy in Tipperary's thrilling draw with Waterford on Sunday.

Barrett acknowledged that "human error" saw the goal given and since Sunday's game the introduction of a video referee to review such incidents has been suggested in some corners.

Barrett is open to exploring whether the HawkEye system, which currently only detects whether a point has been scored or not, could be expanded to include goal-line technology.

"It was a big call and unfortunately on the day human error got it wrong," Barrett said. "We have to acknowledge that an incorrect score was given to Tipperary.

"Going forward, how best can we assist umpires and referees in decision making and goals?

"I think scores are the most important thing because they win matches. We have a point detection system with HawkEye in Croke Park and Thurles and we have to look at the possibility of extending that, particularly with the way the hurling championship is in Munster and Leinster at present. I think that is something we will be reviewing.

"Obviously we can't bring it in for this year, I don't think. But in future we must try and ensure we have, where possible, detection systems for all scores.

"That's my view on it. I think we could extend, not just in terms of venues but the use of HawkEye for not alone points but goals as well. And I think that's something we'll review at the end of the championship season."

A review is pencilled in for next week with Barrett revealing that referee Alan Kelly was "hugely disappointed" with the decision.

"We'll certainly review (the goal) next week. That is pencilled in anyway so that will go ahead and will be a part of the discussion.

"Alan Kelly is hugely disappointed with the fact the goal was given by one of his umpires. The umpire thought he was giving the correct decision.

"But at the end of the day it was incorrect and you can't hide from that fact that it was an incorrect decision that allowed a team to get three points they shouldn't have got.

"The game ended up a draw, the ramifications of it we don't know - they will be seen later on. But from my point of view we need to provide support for referees and umpires as much as possible to have things right on the day.

"All those things must be pulled together to ensure what happened with the goal shouldn't have been allowed and shouldn't be repeated.

"We accept that players put in a huge effort in the championship. And with the games coming thick and fast you don't have much time to dwell on it but you have to have things as right as humanly possible for them."

Irish Independent

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