PtG Article 24.11.2010

Asian Games bring back banned handball referees

The handball tournament at the Asian Games has already seen its share of controversy. A week ago, the Danish coach of the Bahrain team complained over blatant mistakes from referees in their match against Iran. It also seems that the lack of supervision from the International Handball Federation (IHF) has meant that a banned referee has been reinstated

Asian handball has for many years seen manipulation through refereeing. One of the worst examples was the events in the qualifying tournaments for the 2008 Olympic Games, especially the infamous men’s game Korea-Kuwait, which resulted in a CAS prosecution and a permanent ban by the IHF of the Jordanian referees from the match from all international and continental competitions.  

During the on-going Asian Games in Guangzhou, which is not monitored by the IHF as no IHF qualifications take place, the Asians have taken the opportunity to nominate one of these Jordanian referees for the Asian Games. With his partner, he refereed a key game between China and Saudi Arabia last week.Christer Ahl, former President of the IHF Playing Rules and Referees Commission and Team Handball News writer, argues that this demonstrates an attitude of total disregard for IHF decisions, for the worldwide opinion and image, and for any sense of decency. One can only hope that matters do not go further downhill from here on, during the Asian Games and in future events.

SOURCE: Team Handball News