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Refereeing (Multiple Merged Threads)


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11 minutes ago, Wakefield Ram said:

It starts with the media. Just watched the SuperBowl and there was a penalty near the end which put LA Rams in the position to win. It was a very marginal call. But the players didn't surround the refs arguing, the commentators mentioned it but moved on. 

If that happened in the GF, there would be players arguing in the ref's face and the pundits would be banging on about it as the "turning point" of the game.

And what happens on TV filters down to amateur and junior game. 

If it was a turning point of the game then I would imagine the subsequent reporting in the sports news would include that decision.

For me it starts with the players on the field not the media. The media should be discussing the game and any controversial aspects, hopefully in a respectful way.

Plus when I've watched BBC coverage the commenters don't major on any decisions. They may say something like it was a harsh or close call decision but play moves on and so the commentating.  It may be discussed at half time/full time but surely we as viewers would expect that it was talked about.   On your point maybe Sky use to cover the ref decisions more but I think they do i to a lesser degree now.

Edited by redjonn
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There are only a very limited amount of things that we should expect of a referee imo. They should be expected to know the laws of the game inside out. They should be expected to have a minimum level of fitness so that they can keep up with the game. And I would also want them to try to communicate with the players and try to get an understanding there so that the game can flow better as the players know what is expected of them.

Everything else is subjective. We've all seen it on here. Every time there's a decision that is a little bit dubious you can find 5 people with totally different opinions. The refs are on a hiding to nothing when so many rules are subjective or down to interpretation.

If a referee doesn't see a knock on then he doesn't see it. It really is that simple. No amount of training can change that. Unless we make all of them get bionic eyes fitted then they are going to miss things. It's just a part of the game.

The only way things will change significantly is by trying to promote a culture of honesty amongst the players. Stop trying to con the ref at every opportunity and play the game the way it's meant to be played.

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1 hour ago, MZH said:

There are only a very limited amount of things that we should expect of a referee imo. They should be expected to know the laws of the game inside out. They should be expected to have a minimum level of fitness so that they can keep up with the game. And I would also want them to try to communicate with the players and try to get an understanding there so that the game can flow better as the players know what is expected of them.

Everything else is subjective. We've all seen it on here. Every time there's a decision that is a little bit dubious you can find 5 people with totally different opinions. The refs are on a hiding to nothing when so many rules are subjective or down to interpretation.

If a referee doesn't see a knock on then he doesn't see it. It really is that simple. No amount of training can change that. Unless we make all of them get bionic eyes fitted then they are going to miss things. It's just a part of the game.

The only way things will change significantly is by trying to promote a culture of honesty amongst the players. Stop trying to con the ref at every opportunity and play the game the way it's meant to be played.

That's the irony. Players try to con the referee and if they succeed (intentionally cheat) then their own supporters cheer them. 

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1 hour ago, MZH said:

The only way things will change significantly is by trying to promote a culture of honesty amongst the players. Stop trying to con the ref at every opportunity and play the game the way it's meant to be played.

I couldn't agree with this more.

If a player cons the ref and succeeds, it is now the ref's fault.  How on earth did we arrive at that position.

If a player cons the ref and succeeds then he is a cheat.

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"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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1 hour ago, MZH said:

There are only a very limited amount of things that we should expect of a referee imo. They should be expected to know the laws of the game inside out. They should be expected to have a minimum level of fitness so that they can keep up with the game. And I would also want them to try to communicate with the players and try to get an understanding there so that the game can flow better as the players know what is expected of them.

Everything else is subjective. We've all seen it on here. Every time there's a decision that is a little bit dubious you can find 5 people with totally different opinions. The refs are on a hiding to nothing when so many rules are subjective or down to interpretation.

If a referee doesn't see a knock on then he doesn't see it. It really is that simple. No amount of training can change that. Unless we make all of them get bionic eyes fitted then they are going to miss things. It's just a part of the game.

The only way things will change significantly is by trying to promote a culture of honesty amongst the players. Stop trying to con the ref at every opportunity and play the game the way it's meant to be played.

With regards to Honestly,

Saw a clip of a RU game were the ref was uncertain whether a player had grounded the ball whilst being tackled over the line.  Hard to tell on the TV but when the ref asked the player if he grounded the ball... he said nope I didn't ground it.

I guess that's being honest... I don't think we would get many others doing the same

 

Edited by redjonn
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Since i started watching RL fan’s have always called official’s, some worse than others. A lot of supporters think RL official’s from 1895 until Sky regularly started showing live matches never made an error, because “It were better when i were a lad”. Some fan’s think the whole of the RFL are against their club. I always wonder why the people who think the game is corrupt bother wasting so much time, energy, anger, and money watching the sport. I guess they think everything is bent when the result they hoped for doesn’t go their way. Is that called cognitive bias or something like that ?. 

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Its a many layered issue to be honest. 

Im a Rugby League supporter, im a junior coach ( all ages from u7s to Open Age ) and have refereed many games at junior rugby league just like many coaches at that age and level. 

My experience as a ref is that you will rarely have a good game, i must have refereed 60 games in my time. and i would say i can recall 3-4 times where both the opposition and my teams parents were happy with my performance. At Amateur level refs are alone, with no support and expected to keep track of 26 players, Control the game and get every call spot on. This while taking Dogs abuse from both touchlines and far too often with coaches questioning everything you do. And your up against it, your watching 26 players, yet all those parents are watching with an eagle eyed focus on one player, their son or Daughter. No one misses a single thing that happens to their kid, and they have no idea how you can miss it if they can see it.  

Next, The amount of people who follow this sport and don't understand the rules is crazy, and the RFL are partly to blame for this. Just basic concepts like winning the floor and numbers in the tackle bamboozle people, Jumping to catch a bouncing ball is another classic where people don't understand the rules. We make this worse by changing rules too often and then leave the refs to deal with the fallout. 

 

Then we have our TV commentary teams who spend a ludicrous amount of time questioning every borderline decision, sitting in their ivory towers with 10 replays from 6 angles and slow motion before they then call out the referees mistakes. 

 

Refs are human, they will make mistakes. Players are Human, they will make mistakes. The Best teams are the Best teams because they can perform well and defend theirs and the refs errors when things are going poorly. Teams that can't do the same blame the ref and hide their poor coaching or performances in any way they can.

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2 minutes ago, tonyvikinggee said:

Its a many layered issue to be honest. 

Im a Rugby League supporter, im a junior coach ( all ages from u7s to Open Age ) and have refereed many games at junior rugby league just like many coaches at that age and level. 

My experience as a ref is that you will rarely have a good game, i must have refereed 60 games in my time. and i would say i can recall 3-4 times where both the opposition and my teams parents were happy with my performance. At Amateur level refs are alone, with no support and expected to keep track of 26 players, Control the game and get every call spot on. This while taking Dogs abuse from both touchlines and far too often with coaches questioning everything you do. And your up against it, your watching 26 players, yet all those parents are watching with an eagle eyed focus on one player, their son or Daughter. No one misses a single thing that happens to their kid, and they have no idea how you can miss it if they can see it.  

Next, The amount of people who follow this sport and don't understand the rules is crazy, and the RFL are partly to blame for this. Just basic concepts like winning the floor and numbers in the tackle bamboozle people, Jumping to catch a bouncing ball is another classic where people don't understand the rules. We make this worse by changing rules too often and then leave the refs to deal with the fallout. 

 

Then we have our TV commentary teams who spend a ludicrous amount of time questioning every borderline decision, sitting in their ivory towers with 10 replays from 6 angles and slow motion before they then call out the referees mistakes. 

 

Refs are human, they will make mistakes. Players are Human, they will make mistakes. The Best teams are the Best teams because they can perform well and defend theirs and the refs errors when things are going poorly. Teams that can't do the same blame the ref and hide their poor coaching or performances in any way they can.

Wonderful post.

Let me say, thank you for all you do for Rugby League.  What the coaches and parents should understand is that they are likely to drive people away from the game by their selfish actions and I am glad you are able to see past this.

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"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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7 minutes ago, tonyvikinggee said:

Its a many layered issue to be honest. 

Im a Rugby League supporter, im a junior coach ( all ages from u7s to Open Age ) and have refereed many games at junior rugby league just like many coaches at that age and level. 

My experience as a ref is that you will rarely have a good game, i must have refereed 60 games in my time. and i would say i can recall 3-4 times where both the opposition and my teams parents were happy with my performance. At Amateur level refs are alone, with no support and expected to keep track of 26 players, Control the game and get every call spot on. This while taking Dogs abuse from both touchlines and far too often with coaches questioning everything you do. And your up against it, your watching 26 players, yet all those parents are watching with an eagle eyed focus on one player, their son or Daughter. No one misses a single thing that happens to their kid, and they have no idea how you can miss it if they can see it.  

Next, The amount of people who follow this sport and don't understand the rules is crazy, and the RFL are partly to blame for this. Just basic concepts like winning the floor and numbers in the tackle bamboozle people, Jumping to catch a bouncing ball is another classic where people don't understand the rules. We make this worse by changing rules too often and then leave the refs to deal with the fallout. 

 

Then we have our TV commentary teams who spend a ludicrous amount of time questioning every borderline decision, sitting in their ivory towers with 10 replays from 6 angles and slow motion before they then call out the referees mistakes. 

 

Refs are human, they will make mistakes. Players are Human, they will make mistakes. The Best teams are the Best teams because they can perform well and defend theirs and the refs errors when things are going poorly. Teams that can't do the same blame the ref and hide their poor coaching or performances in any way they can.

Brilliant post.

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Unfortunately,this forum is mainly full of mature,level headed lovers of the game.No,really,it is!

A crowded terrace has the characteristics of a pack of wild animals.When one person protests or berates the referee,the rest follow. This is especially noticeable in football for obvious reasons.

I think the points about tv commentators are quite valid. If we could somehow persuade them to be more supportive of refs,it would be a start.Having said that,if they would just shut up for a few seconds,it would help.Remember Kenneth Wolsetnholme's quote about letting the pictures speak for themselves?

I have to admit that when I started watching at about 11 years old,I used to yell at the referee,even though I probably knew about 10% of the rules of the game. Now,over 50 years later,i just grumble under my breath.

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Just now, BadlyOverdrawnBoy said:

But the technology will still be there and will still be used. It will make no difference to the controversy or criticism of decisions. 

Never did before we had it, but the direct anger was displayed on the bus or train going home or in the pub whilst all the players where in the shower, the games become a pantomime 

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I can't remember which coach it was but I remember one saying that before every game he had a session telling the players how to play the ref in what he would ping them for and what to avoid. By inference that also means he probably told them what they were most likely to get away with.

 

 

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8 minutes ago, Padge said:

I can't remember which coach it was but I remember one saying that before every game he had a session telling the players how to play the ref in what he would ping them for and what to avoid. By inference that also means he probably told them what they were most likely to get away with.

 

 

Pretty standard in the amateur game. If you have the same ref 5-6 times a season then you get to know their quirks, Some refs are keen on a clean PTB, some on offside, some will give High shots for borderline hits. Other refs will let most things slide. 

 

Just good practice to play in a way the ref likes, at the end of the day, they are not robots and every ref controls the game in a slightly different manner. And not conceding penalties is a good way to Win matches.

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10 minutes ago, tonyvikinggee said:

Pretty standard in the amateur game. If you have the same ref 5-6 times a season then you get to know their quirks, Some refs are keen on a clean PTB, some on offside, some will give High shots for borderline hits. Other refs will let most things slide. 

 

Just good practice to play in a way the ref likes, at the end of the day, they are not robots and every ref controls the game in a slightly different manner. And not conceding penalties is a good way to Win matches.

I am going back years, probably 40 years for this, it was very novel at the time because of the amount of detail that went into it. The coach was showing players videos of how the ref behaved.

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Radio 5 Live: Saturday 14 April 2007

Dave Whelan "In Wigan rugby will always be king"

 

This country's wealth was created by men in overalls, it was destroyed by men in suits.

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17 hours ago, Dunbar said:

The issue.  While a lot of refereeing is down to interpretation, we have taken this too far and expect the referee to make judgements where no judgement is necessary. 

We ask referees to decide if there was attempt to play the ball correctly or not.  Well, the attempt should be unnecessary.  If the ball is played correctly, play on.  Otherwise penalize the player.  How on earth is a referee supposed to interpret 'attempt' and then be consistent with all the other referees.

In the Women`s forum, I`ve referenced an incident in a recent NSWRL junior rep game where the tackled player`s boot scrapes across the ball as she attempts to play it. There`s minimal contact, and the ball doesn`t move. The ref plays on and shouts "made an attempt at playing it".

In my view, this is how the PTB rule should be applied. A player who clearly makes a genuine attempt to play the ball with the foot deserves the benefit of the doubt.

The "genuine attempt" guideline is designed to avoid penalizing honest players and means fewer unnecessary stoppages. It works perfectly well elsewhere in the world. Only in this country has it led to the adoption of the rollball. That points to a specific decadence in UK RL values.

As usual, historical baggage probably explains our affliction. Our players, coaches, administrators, media have always been resolutely anti-intellectual. "We`re simple folk, we like simple things, so keep it simple. If you want any of that fancy technical stuff, then Rugby Union is the game for you". 

Against this backdrop, in relation to applications of rules, the only concept a UK RL crowd can get their head around is "cheating". And the refs cop the brunt.

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10 hours ago, JF1 said:

A crowded terrace has the characteristics of a pack of wild animals.When one person protests or berates the referee,the rest follow. This is especially noticeable in football for obvious reasons.

I think the points about tv commentators are quite valid. If we could somehow persuade them to be more supportive of refs,it would be a start.

The lead commentator on Our League calls every short or flat pass as possibly forward. He approves when an official calls a phantom forward pass, sees it as a sign the ref knows his job. When a short or flat pass isn`t called he resorts to "officials are only human, we all make mistakes, they only get one look" and similar defensive rhetoric.

This is essentially a polite and sympathetic version of the volleys of abuse that come from the crowd. It represents the same inability to understand notions like "benefit of the doubt" or "balance of probabilities", which are vital to applying the rules logically and in the best interests of the game.

A Northern League fan whose idea of fun is shouting "FORWARD" at every opposition pass that fails to travel more than half a yard backwards has been doing that all his life. He is likely to have picked up the habit from adults while watching the game as a child.

If he moved south, started going to RU games, and persisted with his "FORWARD" Tourette`s syndrome, he would attract funny looks and possibly mark himself out as the village idiot. And hence, he would stop it. That cures one individual. Curing crowds is a vastly different challenge. Cultural change is generally a top-down process. The stumbling block in UK RL is that those who reach positions of influence are intellectually no better than average blokes on the terraces.

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18 hours ago, redjonn said:

If it was a turning point of the game then I would imagine the subsequent reporting in the sports news would include that decision.

For me it starts with the players on the field not the media. The media should be discussing the game and any controversial aspects, hopefully in a respectful way.

Plus when I've watched BBC coverage the commenters don't major on any decisions. They may say something like it was a harsh or close call decision but play moves on and so the commentating.  It may be discussed at half time/full time but surely we as viewers would expect that it was talked about.   On your point maybe Sky use to cover the ref decisions more but I think they do i to a lesser degree now.

If in a very close football match the ball went out and wasn't called as such and in the next passage of play the side benefitting scored, it would be a major story. 

RL fans are deluded that we are somehow above all of that. Yes the refs are doing a job and I'm sure are trying their best, but nobody benefits from being immune from criticism.

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"nobody benefits from being immune from criticism."

True. That applies to players, pundits AND posters.

"Stay away from negative people. They have a problem for every solution."

Albert Einstein   (Fat chance on THIS forum)

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19 minutes ago, JohnM said:

"nobody benefits from being immune from criticism."

True. That applies to players, pundits AND posters.

Posters and fans aren't paid to be any good at what we do tbf.

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