ADVERTISEMENT

What is a Smart Cricket Ball? Does it Play Differently to a Standard Ball?

Smart Cricket Ball enables data and information to flow from inside the ball that’s being bowled.

Updated
Tech and Auto
3 min read
<div class="paragraphs"><p>Smart Cricket Ball enables data and information to flow from inside the ball that’s being bowled.</p></div>
i

Today's cricket is influenced by several technological aids — be it the Snick-o-Meter, Hotspot, Ultra-Edge, Hawkeye, Spider Cams, speed guns, LED wickets, or the stump microphones. The latest addition to this list is going to be the Smart Ball.

Smart Cricket Ball enables data and information to flow from inside the ball that’s being bowled to a set of computers on the sidelines, to help translate the performance and assist the broadcast.

Interestingly, the Kookaburra Smart Ball will make its debut at this year’s Caribbean Premier League (CPL) which gets underway in St Kitts & Nevis on 26 August.

What is a Smart Cricket Ball? Does it Play Differently to a Standard Ball?

  1. 1. What is a Smart Cricket Ball?

    <div class="paragraphs"><p>A microchip is present in the innermost layer of the ball. </p></div>

    A microchip is present in the innermost layer of the ball.

    (Photo: Kookaburra)

    The Kookaburra Smart Ball looks, feels and plays exactly the same way as a regular ball but has an embedded chip that registers many more data points than radar or ball tracking technology.

    A microchip is present in the innermost layer of the ball. On the outside, the ball will be covered with leather, like any other cricket ball.

    Expand
  2. 2. What's New?

    The microchip embedded in the ball transmits information from the ball to a system. This information obtained can be displayed to fans in real-time.

    The chip can currently measure the speed and revolutions of the ball at different stages of its journey, from the hand of a bowler to the wicket-keeper, fielder or the boundary line.

    The Smart Ball is able to measure the exact degree of bounce, swing, drift and dip.

    The manufacturing company notes that the Smart Ball will be a valuable coaching aid to players of all levels, from Test-playing pros to aspiring junior cricketers who want to improve their bowling.

    The ball can be connected to an app meaning that it can be used in training by any player.

    Here are some of the interesting data points offered by the Smart Ball:

    • The speed and revolutions at the release point (the moment the hand lets go)

    • The speed and revolutions pre-bounce (reading just before it hits the pitch)

    • The speed post-bounce (the reading just after the ball hits the pitch)

    • Up to 30 hours of in-game use

    • Electronics that can withstand 300+ impacts at an average 150km/h, and peak impacts over 300km/h with no outages or visible signs of stress.

    Expand
  3. 3. How Different is Smart Ball from Traditional Ball?

    Not much. The Smart Ball is designed in a way that it fits the same ranges of size, weight and bounce as a traditional ball.

    David Orchard, General Manager, Kookaburra said: “The ball itself performs exactly like the Kookaburra Turf Ball, with the added technology to measure its behaviour according to release, pre-bounce and post bounce during a delivery.”

    The manufacturers claim that the ball and the electronic chip can handle the regular punishment from a cricket bat. "We’ve both tested with bats in the nets and on Kookaburra's regular impact testing machines that test repeated impact at upwards of 150km/h," read a statement by them.

    Expand
  4. 4. Can Smart Ball Be Used in International Cricket?

    No, Smart Balls are still in the testing phase. The manufacturers note that there is not enough testing done yet for it to go straight into an international match.

    Also, the primary concern would be the longevity issue – as in how much wear-and-tear can a ball take and how long would it last in intense playing conditions.

    Meanwhile, the ball has been trialled and tested by some cricketers in Australia, most notably the Queensland Bulls' Sheffield Shield squad.

    "While its full capability has not been realised or data gathered by these players or teams, the trials have been conducted as a way for Kookaburra and SportCor to ascertain whether the ball plays the way it should and that the app receives accurate data. We are at a point where we are confident that we’ve achieved these objectives," read a statement posted by Kookaburra on its official website.

    (At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

    Expand

What is a Smart Cricket Ball?

<div class="paragraphs"><p>A microchip is present in the innermost layer of the ball. </p></div>

A microchip is present in the innermost layer of the ball.

(Photo: Kookaburra)

The Kookaburra Smart Ball looks, feels and plays exactly the same way as a regular ball but has an embedded chip that registers many more data points than radar or ball tracking technology.

A microchip is present in the innermost layer of the ball. On the outside, the ball will be covered with leather, like any other cricket ball.

What's New?

The microchip embedded in the ball transmits information from the ball to a system. This information obtained can be displayed to fans in real-time.

The chip can currently measure the speed and revolutions of the ball at different stages of its journey, from the hand of a bowler to the wicket-keeper, fielder or the boundary line.

The Smart Ball is able to measure the exact degree of bounce, swing, drift and dip.

The manufacturing company notes that the Smart Ball will be a valuable coaching aid to players of all levels, from Test-playing pros to aspiring junior cricketers who want to improve their bowling.

The ball can be connected to an app meaning that it can be used in training by any player.

Here are some of the interesting data points offered by the Smart Ball:

  • The speed and revolutions at the release point (the moment the hand lets go)

  • The speed and revolutions pre-bounce (reading just before it hits the pitch)

  • The speed post-bounce (the reading just after the ball hits the pitch)

  • Up to 30 hours of in-game use

  • Electronics that can withstand 300+ impacts at an average 150km/h, and peak impacts over 300km/h with no outages or visible signs of stress.

ADVERTISEMENT

How Different is Smart Ball from Traditional Ball?

Not much. The Smart Ball is designed in a way that it fits the same ranges of size, weight and bounce as a traditional ball.

David Orchard, General Manager, Kookaburra said: “The ball itself performs exactly like the Kookaburra Turf Ball, with the added technology to measure its behaviour according to release, pre-bounce and post bounce during a delivery.”

The manufacturers claim that the ball and the electronic chip can handle the regular punishment from a cricket bat. "We’ve both tested with bats in the nets and on Kookaburra's regular impact testing machines that test repeated impact at upwards of 150km/h," read a statement by them.

ADVERTISEMENT

Can Smart Ball Be Used in International Cricket?

No, Smart Balls are still in the testing phase. The manufacturers note that there is not enough testing done yet for it to go straight into an international match.

Also, the primary concern would be the longevity issue – as in how much wear-and-tear can a ball take and how long would it last in intense playing conditions.

Meanwhile, the ball has been trialled and tested by some cricketers in Australia, most notably the Queensland Bulls' Sheffield Shield squad.

"While its full capability has not been realised or data gathered by these players or teams, the trials have been conducted as a way for Kookaburra and SportCor to ascertain whether the ball plays the way it should and that the app receives accurate data. We are at a point where we are confident that we’ve achieved these objectives," read a statement posted by Kookaburra on its official website.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

ADVERTISEMENT
Published: 
ADVERTISEMENT
Stay Updated

Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox.

Join over 120,000 subscribers!
ADVERTISEMENT