Handpass count proving a challenge for refs - Barrett
Referees have been "challenged" keeping count of handpass sequences under the playing rules currently being trialled during the pre-season competitions, the head of their national committee Willie Barrett has accepted.
Barrett said there has been consultation with referees who meet tonight for a first test and have the first of their 2019 seminars tomorrow ahead of the start of the Allianz Leagues next week.
But whether all of the experimental rules will be in force for the league remains to be seen as Central Council gathers in Croke Park tomorrow for a review that might tease out "unintended consequences", according to the chairman of the rules committee that proposed them, Professor David Hassan.
Referees have been conveying their difficulties in keeping count.
"From what I can gather, the handpass is the one giving the most problems in terms of, 'Is it one, two, three or is it the fourth one,'" said Barrett. "It may be difficult because the focus is confined the handpass whereas the focus should be on the whole lot.
"We did have a consultation with the refs and that's what came back. We've certainly given that information to the relevant committee and they will be aware tomorrow that it was the one which challenged them most."
The five rule experiments have been ongoing through pre-season competitions but opposition has been loudest to the handpass restriction from managers and players.