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ICC to introduce innovative bat sensors, drones in Champions Trophy

England trio Jason Roy, Alex Hales and Ben Stokes will be among the players from around the world pioneering new bat sensors during the upcoming Champions Trophy, it was announced Tuesday.

Technology giant Intel has developed a sensor, placed on top of the bat handle, that provides previously unseen precise details about a player’s bat speed and angle of back lift.

The aim is to both provide more information to television audiences and, longer term, develop a coaching aid.

Former England captain turned cricket broadcaster Nasser Hussain told a news conference at The Oval: “How many times have we spoken about people having ‘fast hands’ or ‘great bat speed’?

“But what does that mean? We’ve never quantified it.”

Hussain said Roy, going through a run drought that has yielded four single figure scores in his last five one-day international innings, might gain from the new system

“Take Jason Roy, struggling a little bit at the moment. Say this technology had been in place for two or three years, he could have a net tomorrow, play normally, and then take the data from two years ago and say ‘is everything I’m doing with my bat exactly the same as it was?’ and if you know it was, you know that’s not the issue.”

Hussain added: “There will be traditionalists thinking ‘is this relevant?’.

“But if it gives you that one percent to improve the game, someone will be using it.”

What does it do!

Bat sensor can be mounted on any cricket bat to generate data for every stroke that the batsman plays. With this technology, parameters like back-lift, bat speed and follow-through can be tracked for every cricket stroke.

Speculur Managing Director Atul Srivastava said, “Speculur BatSense with Intel Inside has the potential to transform cricket across a varied audience from coaches to aspiring self-taught cricketers.” Srivastava added: “Coaches can use their insights and expertise along with the bat sensor data to make specific adjustments to a batsman’s technique ultimately helping him perform better.”

 

Speculur also announced plans to bring this technology to consumers later in the year. With Speculur BatSense, hundreds of thousands of young and aspiring cricketers will soon be able to measure, track and improve their batting skills. Speculur plans to make Speculur BatSense with Intel Inside available in Australia, India, the United States and the U.K. in the second half of 2017.

Former English captain-turned-commentator Nasser Hussain, stressed that technology has and will continue to positively affect cricket in a lot of ways. Player performance, game strategy, adjudication and fan experiences will all change with the introduction of new technologies to the sport.

Other innovations at the Champions Trophy include the use of high-technology drones to provide more in-depth pitch analysis and a virtual reality system that allows fans to experience what it’s like to face the world’s best bowlers.

Drones

In a first at the Champions Trophy, the Intel Falcon 8 Drone, equipped with high-definition and infrared cameras will be used for advanced pitch analysis before every match. Images captured by the drone will offer rich visual data on pitch conditions such as grass cover, grass health and topology, which will be used to generate daily pitch reports leveraged by commentators during broadcasts.

Virtual Reality

Intel is also showcasing innovative experiences for in-stadium fans. Virtual reality (VR) experience zones at The Oval and Edgbaston will allow fans to experience facing a virtual bowler in an immersive cricketing environment. Using a head mounted display (HMD), the player will be able to test his or her batting skills against a virtual bowler. Using the Intel Curie technology-enabled cricket bat, the player will be able to see data from a swing, such as bat speed and back-lift angle, as well as a simulated score from the VR session.

 

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