News

VAR Controversy - 3 Other Sports That Show How It’s Done

February 12, 2020

VAR Controversy - 3 Other Sports That Show How It’s Done

 

The 2019/20 Premier League season will mostly be remembered for Liverpool’s dominance, but not far behind will be the introduction of VAR, which has fans, players, managers and pundits all raging for it either to be disbanded or, at the very least, to be radically reformed. Many have argued that the game’s soul is at stake, with players afraid to celebrate goals, and breaks in play turning the sport into a quasi-American Football hellscape of timeouts, and Jose Mourinho throwing flags at the linesman. No one wants to see it!

The counterargument is that new technology is always viewed with suspicion by those wedded to the idea of tradition going hand-in-hand with a lack of positive change, as has been evidenced in sports and games as wide ranging as cricket to poker. However, since its introduction at the beginning of this Premier League season, there has been pushback against Video Assistant Referees (VAR), but the Premier League suits insist it’s here to stay. So, what can be done to make it better? These other sports may just point the way.

Tennis

Hawkeye was greeted with perhaps as much, if not more, derision than VAR when it was first unveiled back in 2006, with big names such as Roger Federer and Michael Stich going as far as to say it’s bad for the game. However, fast-forward a few years and the technology is universally viewed as a welcome addition to tennis, as fans worried about not seeing the likes of John McEnroe scream, “it was on the line!” saw players finding new ways to show their frustration and attitude. So, what did the ATP and WTA Tours get right? Firstly, it takes very little time to review a line call, with a player being given just a few seconds to decide if he or she wishes to challenge. Each player also only receives two challenges per set. However, the main benefit for tennis fans is that the technology is only used for one purpose: line calls, eliminating the need for lengthy subjective decisions such as handball in football. Perhaps football needs to do as tennis has done and rein back the use of technology to places where it can only make decisions swiftly and correctly, such as goal line technology and offsides, rather than also trying to deal with penalty decisions, handballs and red card incidents.

Cricket

Unlike tennis, technology in cricket has rendered umpires virtually redundant, with almost all major decisions being double-checked by multiple technologies, including heat detection, sound detection, ultra-slow-motion replays and Hawkeye. Few would argue that the technology has virtually eliminated incorrect decisions, although it has had a profound effect on the game and how it’s played, with LBW (leg before wicket) decisions being appealed for more vociferously and captains having to think carefully about whether to use one of their precious reviews. Of course, by its very nature cricket is a slower game, punctuated by pauses, allowing for such decisions to be made, a luxury football doesn’t have. However, what football can learn from cricket is that one technology doesn’t fit all scenarios, and that often, to get the correct decision, other avenues must be explored.

Rugby

Rugby was ahead of the curve when it came to adopting technology, with TMO (Television Match Official) getting its first run-out in 2001, allowing referees on the field to review whether a try had been scored legitimately, checking for things like offside that are often tricky for referees and linesmen to spot. Fans are now more used to celebrating facing the stadium’s big screen than they are watching the pitch, which although a bit sad doesn’t appear to overly bother the sport’s followers. One interesting technological advance in rugby is the use of body cameras on referees, allowing fans to see how decisions are formulated and how the referee interacts with players. For too long football players have gotten away with abusing referees, allowing the practice to filter down into the junior and grassroots games. Perhaps body cams could be what stamps out such unnecessary abuse. After all, who wouldn’t have wanted to watch Pierluigi Collina’s body cam?



Oct 15 2020 - How Knowing Your Statistics Can Help with Betting
Oct 07 2020 - The Future of UK Bookmakers
Sep 07 2020 - Premier League 20/21 Season Preview
Aug 14 2020 - Sancho, Torres, Grealish: Tracking Major Transfers in the English Premier League
Jul 13 2020 - Founder Guerassim Nikolov Introduces the Kits for Africa Campaign from SportPesa
May 06 2020 - The Future of Football After COVID-19
Apr 27 2020 - Asia Top Sports Betting Bookies
Mar 11 2020 - Premier League News
Mar 04 2020 - The Betting Boom
Mar 03 2020 - Are Man City Bluffing?
Feb 19 2020 - How to leverage statistics and data for betting right in the premier league?
Feb 12 2020 - VAR Controversy - 3 Other Sports That Show How It’s Done
Jan 30 2020 - EURO 2020 first look and group stage predictions
Jan 28 2020 - Euro 2020 Playoffs - Who Will Make It to the Competition?
Jan 21 2020 - Which teams are at risk of falling through the Premier League relegation trapdoor in 2020?
Dec 27 2019 - Amazon Prime Begins its Journey into Football Broadcasting
Sep 01 2019 - Latest updates from English Premier League 2019/20 season and betting involved and best slots
Aug 02 2019 - Sportsbet.io Partners up with Watford F. C. in a 3-Year Deal
Aug 01 2019 - Who will win EPL 2019/2020 Season?
Jul 09 2019 - Opening Premier League Fixtures: Pinpointing the Betting Value
Jun 21 2019 - Premier League Fixtures 2019-20 announced
May 30 2019 - The Latest Scoop on Arsenal Transfers
May 30 2019 - How will the newly promoted teams get on in the Premier League next season?
May 15 2019 - A Look at the Two All English Finals
May 15 2019 - Suarez Flies Home
Apr 30 2019 - Will the Premier League Winner be Red or Blue?
Apr 29 2019 - The race for promotion. Who will be in the Championship Playoff finals?
Apr 05 2019 - The Big Premier League survival gamble – winners and losers so far!
Mar 24 2019 - The upcoming Summer Transfer session
Mar 13 2019 - Premiership Update - The Decisive Stage
Jun 24 2018 - 2018 FIFA World Cup 2018, Russia
Jun 13 2018 - The kits that should be hits at Russia 18
May 25 2018 - Behind the Scenes in the 2018 May Transfer Window
Feb 20 2018 - What are England’s chances of winning the World Cup 2018?
Jan 08 2018 - Conspiracy Theories Surrounding the Clasico
Dec 14 2017 - The Sounds and Sights of Five Extraordinary Minutes
Sep 06 2017 - Mkhitaryan and Richarlison Dominate
Oct 31 2016 - A Bluffer’s Guide To The Top Four’s Fixtures This Weekend
Oct 06 2016 - Draw No Bet as a Football Betting Strategy
Aug 08 2016 - National League - no match stats for 2016/2017
May 28 2016 - Article on Untold Arsenal
Apr 04 2016 - New Form Page
Dec 14 2015 - KUMB Article
Nov 21 2015 - Shots on Target revisited