English Premier League eyes HawkEye for replays
SVG Europe correspondent
The HawkEye object tracking system is already established in tennis and
cricket, not just for television coverage but also for giving players the
opportunity to challenge umpiring decisions. Now tests are being carried out
in football, a sport whose organizing bodies have steadfastly rejected the
notion of any video assistance for referees.
The English Premier League is to hold tests during the summer, some of which
will be observed by representatives from FIFA, the game’s international
governing body. From this the League hopes to gain permission to progress to
the next phase of the project, the use of HawkEye to help judge whether the
ball has crossed the goal line. These further trials will be held at the
Reading or during its reserve games.
A spokesman for the Premier League said that if FIFA did not give the
go-ahead then tests might be carried out during unofficial fixtures. If
approval is given then HawkEye will be used for all
Reading’s first team
games of the 2008-09 season. “This is all subject to the technology
our and FIFA’s testing criteria,” said the spokesman.
Unlike tennis and cricket the use of HawkEye in football will be solely for
the use of referees and not for TV coverage. Paul Hawkins, the inventor of
the system, has been quoted as saying he thinks the technology will be in
general use for Premiership games in at least two years time.