SA goal umpire Steve Axon. Picture: Matt Turner
SA goal umpire Steve Axon. Picture: Matt Turner

AFL unveils Snicko technology for goal reviews

The AFL will unveil new goalpost audio technology on Thursday night - known as "AFL Edge" - to help deliberate on contentious score reviews.

The league has been working on the innovative program for some time, with the Carlton v Richmond game at the MCG the kick-off for a move it hopes will provide greater certainty for players, coaches and supporters.

In a version not dissimilar to cricket's "Snicko" mechanism, the use of the new technology for the AFL's DrinkWise Score Review will see a number of microphones inserted into the two goalposts at either end of grounds at all category one and category two venues for the 2019 season.

It is understood venues without goalpost cameras - including Shanghai, Cairns, Alice Springs and Darwin - will be the only ones without access to AFL Edge.

The audio from the microphones will be synchronised within the Hawk-Eye video feeds and displayed as a wave to help determine if the ball has hit the post.

Goal review technology was introduced by the AFL for the 2012 season following a number of controversial incidents, including a Tom Hawkins "goal" in the 2009 Grand Final that almost certainly deviated off the post.

But the controversy hasn't diminished in the years since, most notably in last year's Showdown when Port Adelaide coach Ken Hinkley was left furious after Crow Josh Jenkins' matchwinning goal appeared to hit the post.

That anger was compounded when Jenkins admitted after the game that he believed his shot had hit the post and should have been called a behind.

The Score Review Officer will make a final call in situations where players are close to the goal line whether the acoustic signal aligns with the ball moving past the post.

The padding on the goalposts and the technology of audio effects will allow microphones to mask most of the crowd sounds.


Jack Riewoldt argues his case after a disallowed goal.
Jack Riewoldt argues his case after a disallowed goal.


DrinkWise chief executive officer Simon Strahan said: "The new AFL Edge technology will allow DrinkWise Score Review Officers conclusive evidence of slight touches of the posts, that would previously be unidentifiable from camera angles alone.

"It means fans will be even closer to the game and won't miss a moment.

"This is the third year of our partnership with the AFL and we see this as an innovative way to remind the football community to drinking responsibly and ensure they see all the action of this great game."

News Corp Australia

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