The New Found Love of Cricket for Technology

Aveek Pal Chaudhuri | Friday, 31 July 2020, 14:29 IST

The New Found Love of Cricket for Technology

In the last few years, the mighty game played on 22-yards has come across latest technological interventions. From the earliest days in the sixteenth century when cricket was a game for the royal families to the present day greats like Sachin Tendulkar, many have witnessed different transitional stages of cricket. Only when India’s first world cup winning captain Kapil Dev played, the one-day internationals had 60-overs for each side. Later reducing it to 50 overs and introducing colored jerseys happened. However, these are a few non-technological changes. Cricket was already popular before technological intervention. Using technology to make accurate decisions for run-outs or lbws made it more popular. Below is a list of changes in terms of Technology In Cricket.

1. Third Umpire – Decision making for on-field umpires became easy after the introduction of third umpire. Like the on-field umpires, third umpires are symmetrically fit to make decisions. A third umpire sitting in front of a television consults with the on-field umpires with the help of wireless technology and takes decisions on run out, and no ball by watching video replay slow motions. 

2. Decision Review System (DRS) – A few years ago, cricket got Decision Review System technology. The first time DRS implementation happened in a test series between Sri Lanka and India. Though it is not similar to the technology used in tennis and is open to human fault. With the help of DRS, players can challenge on-field decisions and ask for referral from the third umpire.

Television Technology In Cricket

Hawkeye and Snick-o-Meter, Ball Spin RPM, and Hot Spot are the technologies used regularly in cricket.

Hawkeye – Hawkeye technology was first used in 2001 to track the path of a cricket ball and it is playing a major role in DRS for taking LBW decisions.

Snick-o-Meter – Attached to the stumps is a highly sensitive microphone which has detection power of fine edges made by batsmen. However, a real-time Snickometer is getting developed for supporting the Hot Spot Technology.

Ball Spin RPM – This technology was used in the TV coverage of Sky Sports in 2013 Ashes series, where Revolutions Per Minute was able to detect a delivery’s spin soon after its release. A high shutter camera tracking the ball is most probably used to capture the images for detecting a ball’s spin.

Hot Spot – It is a widely used technology for reviewing LBW decisions and nicks. If a batsman makes contact with the ball, then small amount of heat is generated which indicates the area of the bat. This technology is implemented by two infra-red cameras that are placed on the other sides of the cricket field. The cameras can sense and measure heat from friction made by a colliding ball on pad, bat, hit on the ground, or ball touching gloves. The subtraction method creates a range of black and white negative frames in the computer, detecting precise location of a ball’s contact point. Precision of this technology is not up to the mark as there were several controversies on it.

LED Bails – LED bails are the recent technology introduced to cricket to make error-free detection of stumping and run-outs. It is an accurate technology and the bails glow whenever they are not in contact with the stumps. But due to high maintenance cost, there is still decision to be taken on the involvement of LED bails.

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