Melbourne veteran Jordan Lewis says three field umpires on an AFL ground is plenty, following the another round of trialing four field umpires.
As has been the case over the past two seasons, the AFL is trialing four field umpires over the bye rounds in order to determine whether or not it increases the number of correct decisions paid.
However, Lewis believes having a fourth umpire is a hindrance and makes the ground too congested for players.
“I saw a free kick on the weekend paid that I have not seen in my entire career,” Lewis said on AFL 360 on Tuesday night.
“I think it was the centre bounce when a player’s heel stepped over the line and he was penalised for stepping out of the circle.
“I think the biggest issue is…we play a game where we have the most participants on the field. Adding another person takes up space. Players are already trying to run around, trying to find space.”
Lewis even eluded to the fact he believes reducing the number to two umpires would be even better, with that having worked well in the past.
“The fourth umpire has to position himself somewhere close to the contest. It looked like sometimes they were in the road. I think at the moment three umpires is obviously enough.
“We used to have two and it worked.
“Hopefully it is a trial and hopefully it doesn’t go any further than that.”
The trial will continue for Round 12 and Round 13, before going back to three field umpires in Round 14.