SUPER League chief Robert Elstone says he will be closely monitoring the captain's challenge when it is trialled in Australia this weekend.

The challenge, which allows captains to query referees' decisions during stoppages in play, has been provisionally approved by the Australian Rugby League Commission and will be trialled in the All-Stars match on the Gold Coast on Saturday and the Charity Shield a week later.

The challenge, which follows on from the Decision Review System (DRS) in cricket and the line call challenges in tennis, will be presented to the Commission for final approval before the NRL season gets under way in three weeks' time.

Super League has copied a number of innovations from the NRL, most recently the shot clock and golden point, and Elstone is happy for the Australians to trial something new.

"I will always watch with interest because I think we need to keep looking to refresh our rules and see how we can make our game more appealing," said Super League's executive chairman.

"I don't think we should introduce gimmicks - I'm not saying the captain's challenge is that - but we have a responsibility to constantly look at how we make the game more attractive and more appealing.

St Helens Star: Robert Elstone

Robert Elstone

"The Australians are probably better resourced - they have more data and research and they've got more a expansive refereeing and game operations team - and I'm very happy to learn from their trials and experiences and their recommendations.

"That is not to say we should blindly follow what they do but for them to take the lead on rules and laws that can make the game more exciting we should monitor it.

"The shot clock is a great example of something that has worked exceptionally well. It was tested and researched in Australia.

"I have to say on the face of it it has limited appeal to me but let's see how we go."

Elstone also wanted to follow NRL's lead by introducing two referees and, although he encountered resistance in 2019, he says he has not given up on the idea.

"I still believe that it would make a difference to the standard of officiating," he said.

"I think the game gets quicker and quicker and having three sets of eyes looking at the ruck, the play-the-ball and the 10 metres is impossible.

"That's exacerbated in the summer when we play games like the one at Wembley where the game is so quick and the conditions so tough. I think a second referee could only have helped on that occasion and many others.

"The other thing that appeals to me greatly is that it almost creates an apprenticeship scheme to bring on referees.

"If we introduce those younger officials into that second referee slot for one or two seasons, I think it would be good.

"I will continue to push that argument. I'm not sure I'm making great headway on it but I still think a second referee would help."