AAP AFL

AFL to have review centre for finals

By AAP Newswire

The AFL is in a race against time to have a video review centre with-the-lot built for the finals.

The league hopes to have the centre running in time for round 23, so it can be tested ahead of September.

But AFL football operations manager Steve Hocking cannot even confirm its location yet.

The centre - Hocking is adamant it will not be called their "bunker" - will centralise the AFL's controversial score review system.

The video facility will also handle umpire coaching, match review incidents and help with player medical issues - especially concussion.

"The game needs it ... we're doing a whole heap of work on it," Hocking said.

"You just have this ability (with a central facility) to minimise risk and train decision making to a different level."

The AFL currently has 15 score reviewers and the centre will reduce that to four or five - hopefully meaning more consistency and less errors.

"There have definitely been moments, if we've been honest about it - it's been difficult and it has hurt the game," Hocking said of score reviews this season.

"The last couple of weeks, there's been evidence that we've gotten on top of it."

Also in a wide-ranging media briefing on Wednesday:

* The AFL's review of umpiring continues, with Hocking raising the idea of boundary umpires being involved in on-field decisions as the game continues to evolve.

* Tim Neville, who has a military background, is working with the umpiring department to help with their performance assessment.

* The AFL is pleased with the effect of their wide-ranging rule changes this season - Hocking said the 6-6-6 rule is keeping games "live" for longer.

* Next week's meeting of the competition committee will look at the contentious restriction on team runners and what happens with it beyond this year.

* Hocking says tackling has become a feature of the game and he wants more of a balance - noting one match on the weekend had a massive 161 tackles.

* The AFL has received strong blowback from the SA and WA leagues to the mid-season draft.

* The AFL is a step closer to reintroducing a mid-season trade period.