The Malta Independent 21 May 2024, Tuesday
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Waterpolo club complains as match referee is parent of opposing team’s player

Saturday, 23 March 2024, 07:31 Last update: about 3 months ago

Waterpolo team Otters ASC complained on Friday that one of the two referees who officiated the club’s match on Friday was a parent of one of the players of the opposing side.

In a statement on Facebook, the club said its senior team played “its second Winter League game against Birzebbugia, and for the second time running a parent of a player of the opposing team was appointed to officiate this fixture.”

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Otters, the only club that hails from Gozo, lost the match 8-5.

In the first match of the competition, Otters lost to Marsxlokk 10-5.

“This is inacceptable in any sporting event and the National Waterpolo League is certainly no exception, the club said.

It is clear and obvious that such assignment created a conflict of interest. Justice must not only be done but must be seen to be done. This conflict of interest undermines the basic principles of integrity and impartiality, Otters said.

“We believe that this situation negatively affected our team’s performance.

“We reiterate that unless officials are free from any possible bias (actual or perceived), opposing teams will not be competing on a level playing field, and this will only harm the game.

“We expect that this matter is given immediate attention from the responsible officials so that the principles of justice and integrity are not only upheld in practice but also seen to be upheld. We hope that for the benefit of the game such incidents shall not be repeated in the future.”

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