WNBL coach and referee banned for using illegal video footage

A referee passing on a confidential video to a coach in the WNBL has landed both in hot water.

WNBL referee Simon Cosier has been banned for the rest of the season and UC Capitals coach Paul Goriss suspended until January 20 for sharing and using confidential training video for scouting purposes. Picture: Albert Perez/Getty Images
WNBL referee Simon Cosier has been banned for the rest of the season and UC Capitals coach Paul Goriss suspended until January 20 for sharing and using confidential training video for scouting purposes. Picture: Albert Perez/Getty Images

A WNBL referee has been banned for the rest of the season and UC Capitals coach Paul Goriss suspended until January 20 for sharing and using confidential training video for scouting purposes.

Referee Simon Cosier and Goriss have been found guilty of engaging in prohibited conduct after a Basketball Australia investigation, for misusing inside information and engaging in conduct that would impair public confidence in the integrity of basketball and its participants.

Cosier supplied Goriss, a two-time WNBL championship winning coach, with confidential video clips of the Sydney Uni Flames training scrimmage that had been used for referee education purposes.

Despite being found guilty, an independent panel found that no actual advantage was obtained by Goriss or his team.

The Capitals beat the Flames, coached by Australian legend Shane Heal, by three points in the opening round of the WNBL season.

The behaviour of Cosier and Goriss was labelled “unprofessional and extremely disappointing” by BA chairman John Carey.

Heal reacted on social media suggesting it was hard to believe the Capitals didn’t get an advantage.

“Wow ... where to start. And they keep the points, fined and suspended but no advantage gained,” he said on Twitter.

After an investigation by the BA integrity unit the matter was referred to an independent panel which decided:

- Cosier is banned from all refereeing activities for the WNBL season for his part in offering and supplying the footage to Goriss; and

- Goriss is banned from all coaching activities including Opals duties until January 20, 2022 for using some of the clips for opposition scouting.

“This incident was immediately referred to the Integrity Unit who undertook a full investigation and referred the matter to an independent Hearing Panel,” BA chairman Carey said.

“We will not tolerate this behaviour in basketball. It is unprofessional and extremely disappointing at any level of the game.”

Flames owner Paul Smith said the behaviour “strikes at the heart of integrity in our League and basketball generally”.

The bans are effective immediately and both parties have 14 days to appeal the decision.

In a statement the Capitals said the club “take issues of sport integrity with great seriousness” and that Goriss’ has “accepted responsibility “ for his actions.

“Goriss has demonstrated exemplary character on and off the court over many years and the club is supportive of Goriss now and into the future,” the statement said.

Capitals assistant coach Kennedy Karema will step in to Goriss’ role while he serves his suspension.

A WNBL referee has been banned for the rest of the season and UC Capitals coach Paul Goriss suspended until January 20 for sharing and using confidential training video for scouting purposes. Referee Simon Cosier and Goriss have been found guilty of engaging in prohibited conduct after a Basketball Australia investigation, for misusing inside information and engaging in conduct that would impair public confidence in the integrity of basketball and its participants.

Originally published as WNBL coach and referee banned for using illegal video footage

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