Grand Prix Refereeing Oddity

Uploaded on Tuesday 28 May 2013


Full Bout:

Thank you to Mihail Etropolski for making this video!

This occurs in a quarter-final bout at the Gerevich-Karparti-Kovacs Men's Sabre Grand Prix world cup in Budapest, Hungary. Veniamin Reshetnikov of Russia is on the right and Nicolas Limbach of Germany is on the left.

Why are these two calls different when each fencer exactly repeats his action? Presumably, the referee should be looking for something specific (when the arm begins extension according to the rules, or at least something according to custom, like when the feet move). But when both he and the video referee review the action in slow motion and interpret it in two different ways back-to-back, the truth comes out: he and most referees call points based on feeling. That might work to some extent, and it has in the past, but as athletes get better and better at exploiting those feelings, the lack of methodology begins to show weaknesses in the sport.

Let's please get a firm system of refereeing, even if, as a last resort, it means ignoring points like this. Yes, it would be a terrible change, but is coin flipping any better?

Again, the point of this video is not to single out this director specifically. Rather it is trying to highlight a flaw in refereeing in general that has become a problem recently.


Language: English

Length: 2:45

Country: United States