IHF Handball World Championship finals covered with 20-channel VideoReferee system

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The IHF Men’s Handball World Championships, held in France in January, utilized VideoReferee technology in all event venues. The event semi-finals and final were covered with a 20-channel VideoReferee system, offering referees an unprecedented number of viewing angles.

The VideoReferee had access to eight signals from system-specific cameras located to cover the field and the goals. Since the host broadcaster during the finals used more cameras than originally planned (including a flying camera), it was self-evident for the VideoReferee team to make these additional signals accessible to the referees for judging purposes. To achieve this, the number of camera signals retrieved from the OB van was increased to 12.

Ramon Gallego, member of PRC and responsible for video referee systems during the IHF World Championships 2017 France, said, “We are very satisfied with the use of the VideoReferee system during the IHF 2017 World Championships in France. The system was used to clarify dubious scenes more than 20 times and worked very reliably. For the IHF the use of VideoReferee was very important to help the referees and to ensure a fair competition. We are ready to listen to Broadcast Solutions’s proposals to improve our work.”

Lars Geipel, referee at the IHF World Championships 2017 France, added, “The video assistant referee is a great help for the referees. Any technical support that helps the referees to make the right decision in critical moments of a game is a good thing. We support the project. It is important, however, to use the video assistant referee only in a few, very decisive situations.”

German system integration company Broadcast Solutions provided the VideoReferee systems. Together with technology provider Slomo.tv, all of the competition venues were equipped with the VideoReferee systems, with support provided by Broadcast Solutions during the tournament.

The system is already in use successfully in major sports leagues all around the world (including ice hockey, canoe slalom, basketball, and volleyball) and proved its functionality and ease of use without any failures during competitions. For several years now, all international canoe slalom competitions of the International Canoe Federation (ICF), including the Olympic Games 2016, have been monitored by VideoReferee systems.

At the IHF Handball World Championships 2017, the system used six system-specific micro-cameras that cover the field: two per goal, one for the overall overview, and one for the scoreboard. In addition, the VideoReferee system has access to six additional TV camera signals retrieved from the OB Van.

During the competition, all signals can be viewed and marked simultaneously throughout continuous recording. Using the controller (and/or the touchscreen), individual channels can be selected or special situations can be searched and marked – all in real time. The referee can mark situations during live-recording or by accessing previously recorded material, and can choose between the simultaneous view of four channels, single view or zoom view.

February 8, 2017

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