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Comedy of errors: WWC handball no-call
July 4th, 2011 5:49PM
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[REF WATCH] Hungarian referee Gyoengyi Gaal has apologized for not awarding Australia a penalty kick in its Women's World Cup game with Equatorial Guinea after defender Bruna picked up the ball in front of her own goal. For video of the incident and Randy Vogt's take on the no-call. ...

The bizarre incident took place in the 16th minute of Australia-Equatorial Guinea. Australia’s Leena Khamis took a shot that hit the post and rebounded to Bruna, who caught the ball, held it for three seconds while turning around, then dropped the ball. Her keeper then picked up the ball and punted it downfield.

We asked referee Randy Vogt the author of "Preventive Officiating," for his take on the incident:

"A comedy of errors -- first by Bruna for grabbing the ball. Yet referee Gyoengyi Gaal did not see this deliberate handling foul that should have been a penalty kick. Nor did the other officials notify her that she missed a very important call. What’s the point of having mics and ear pieces if they are not used?

"ESPN commentators Adrian Healey and Kate Markgraf commented that they never saw anything like it.

"Actually, this happens on occasion in young children’s games such as girls U-7 or boys U-10. Watch enough of these games and eventually you’ll spot a shot rebound off the keeper or post to a field player who grabs the ball, not thinking that he or she either is no longer playing as the keeper or is playing another sport.

"I have never seen anything like this in an international match. It’s doubtful that we’ll see much of the referee and perhaps the other match officials in the later rounds of the Women’s World Cup.

Bruna picks up the ball ...



0 comments
  1. Stuart d. Warner
    commented on: July 5, 2011 at 10:57 a.m.
    Randy Vogt says the referee did not see the play, but if she didn't, why not? With eight EG players in the box, and five Australian players, the furthest the referee got was twenty-nine yards out. But could she possibly have lost sight of the ball to such an extent that she didn't see what happened to it after it hit the post? One other thing that might be related--should the referee have allowed the EG keeper to wear orange with the team wearing red? I wonder if the referee was confused because of the similarity in color.
  1. Amos Annan
    commented on: July 5, 2011 at 11:36 a.m.
    Professional and international soccer needs to have video replays to prevent massive errors like this. Give each team 2 challenges a game to review a play on video.
  1. Bill Anderson
    commented on: July 5, 2011 at 12:47 p.m.
    Two games two horrid decisions by the officials (Marta' shove goal), thankfully neither figured into the outcomes of the matches.
  1. Michael Cornelison
    commented on: July 5, 2011 at 1:13 p.m.
    I think that the initial problem could have been the jersey color. Even on television it took a second for me to register that it wasn't the goalkeeper. The combination of colors should never have been allowed. However there's no excuse for not blowing the whistle late once it was figured out. Its hard to believe the near AR didn't see it; I suspect she was paralyzed with disbelief.

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