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Hurling Fans Were Loving TG4's Ref Mic At Kerry Hurling Final

Hurling Fans Were Loving TG4's Ref Mic At Kerry Hurling Final
By PJ Browne Updated

TG4 had a live microphone on referee John O'Halloran for Sunday's Kerry hurling final between Ballyduff and Causeway, and it added a fascinating dimension to the broadcast.

The microphone let us inside the conversations between the official and players, and informed viewers at home about why he is making certain decisions.

There was fascinating moment just before half time of the match, where O'Halloran blew Ballyduff full forward Padraig Boyle for a foul. Viewers were allowed to listen to the conversation between the two as Boyle (unsuccessfully) tries to talk O'Halloran out of giving him a yellow card.

It is another innovative addition to TG4's Gaelic games' broadcasts. Earlier this year, for the final rounds of the National Hurling and Football Leagues, TG4 brought us the GAA version of the NFL's Redzone broadcast as they buzzed between several games showing crucial goals and points.

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7 August 2022; A TG4 sound microphone on referee John O'Halloran before the Kerry County Senior Hurling Championship Final match between Ballyduff and Causeway at Austin Stack Park in Tralee, Kerry. Photo by Brendan Moran/Sportsfile

Sunday's game at Austin Stack Park in Tralee was the first broadcast of the new club season for TG4. It was also the first Kerry hurling decider to be shown on live television.

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In the end, Causeway won 2-15 to 0-16.

In a hurling championship where virtually every game is a local derby, Sunday's final was one of the most local. It's between two sides from the same parish, with the villages situated just 8km apart. TG4 chose an intriguing game for which to mic up the referee.

Earlier this year, inter-county football referee David Gough explained why he would like to see his microphone audio being made available to broadcasters.

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"The once advancement I would like to see to help me as a referee is my microphone on matchday being released to TV studios, to the pundits, or whoever can have access to it," he said.

"So they can understand the decisions I'm making. Quite often, the decisions, 99 per cent of the time are correct in relation to the rule but they are seeing or quoting something completely different on the television.

"That's the huge frustration for me. I don't watch matches back with commentary because I know what I've done on the day, so I watch it back with my mindset. If my microphone was released to those people, well then they might have a better understanding of why a free was given or why I thought a foul occurred."

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See Also: Graham O'Sullivan Pays Tribute To Underage Teammate As Kerry Celebrate


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