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Video referral good for hockey, but needs fine-tuning: NZ coach

Last updated on: March 10, 2010 17:50 IST

The video referral system at the hockey World Cup may have disappointed many, but New Zealand coach Shane McLeod and his German counterpart Markus Weise feel the newly-introduced system is a valuable addition to the game and only needs some fine-tuning.

The referral system, introduced in an international competition for the first time, has been under the scanner right from the start of the tournament. Not only India coach Jose Brasa and his Australian counterpart Ric Charlesworth were strong protesters of the system, it also irked South Africa captain Austin Smith, who termed it "bizarre and imperfect".

However, Germany coach Weise seemed happy with the new rule but said some fine-tuning would make it better.

"I am happy with the referral system. I think it can be of great help to the onfield umpires as the speed of the game makes it very difficult for the umpires to judge each and everything correctly," Weise said.

"I think it should be used more frequently to get things right but I am of the opinion that the umpires should themselves refer a decision if they have a doubt," he said.

The Black Sticks coach McLeod was of the view that video umpire should be called into action straight away when there is a doubt.

"In my mind the decisions need to be challenge right away, otherwise it makes a lot of difference in the game. At the moment there is huge variation in the system," McLeod said.

The young German side is well on course for their third consecutive World Cup title but Weise said he does not have any preference when it comes to the semi-final opponent.

"I don't really care. If you want to win a tournament you should be prepared to beat anyone. If you come into the tournament looking for some particular team would like to face, I feel this is not the right approach," he said.

German captain Maximillian Muller added, "Australia are the favourites for the title. They have better strikers but England too is playing their best hockey. So both the teams will be tough opponents."

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