Referees look to video evidenceArticle
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EHF Cup Finals in Nantes saw the first use of goal line video to confirm goal decision
»2012-13 Men's News

Referees look to video evidence

There was a first for the EHF in Nantes on the opening day of the EHF Cup Finals on Saturday, 18 May.

In the seventh minute of the first semi-final match between Nantes and Holstebro, the Belarusian referee, Siarhei Repkin, approached the technical area and asked for a replay of Vale Rivera-Folch’s penalty shot.

The ball had crossed the line, the goal was given, and HBC Nantes went on to beat Holstebro 26-20.

Implemented for the first time in Nantes, the new goal line system has been developed by Handball Vision, in conjunction with the French Handball Federation, and offers referees the chance to confirm whether or not the ball has crossed the line.

With a wide-angle camera in the roof of the goal, the system offers referees a complete picture of the goal and the goal line.

A technician sits courtside during the match and offers referees the opportunity to ask for the replay in slow motion.

According to Armin Steiger, developer of the system, the video evidence is there to assist the referee, and ultimately it is the referee, who has to decide whether the ball has indeed crossed the line.

“The French federation has been testing the system, and not just with goal line video replay, but also additional cameras, which with the assistance of a third referee, help the on-court referees to make the correct decisions,” he said.

“For the EHF and at the EHF Cup Finals in Nantes we are using one camera in each of the goal, showing the goal line, and there is no direct communication between the referees and the technician.”

He continued: “As a result of feedback here, we’re now looking to develop the system further, adding a second camera and also connecting the system to the official time, so that we can allow referees to see whether the ball crosses the line before the final whistle.”

Following the first implementation of the system at the EHF Cup Finals, the technology will be further assessed to decide how and whether it can be implemented in future EHF events.

TEXT: EHF / jjr