Australian ball manufacturer Kookaburra last week unveiled the ‘SmartBall’ - a cricket ball with an embedded microchip that provides instant data on speed of the delivery. It was highly rumoured that the SmartBall could be used in Twenty20 Leagues around the world, with the Big Bash League on their radar as well.
However, responding to the development, Cricket Australia has quashed those rumours by saying the SmartBall was unlikely to feature in this year’s BBL given that it needed more extensive testing before being used in any top-flight competition.
“A cricket ball that can gather data about things such as speed, movement and power is an extremely exciting innovation that will bring benefits to fans, but also coaches and players,” CA’s Head of Cricket Operations Peter Roach was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au.
“If this cricket ball is presented to us as a possible innovation to introduce into our competitions and matches, then our responsibility will be to ensure that the characteristics of how the cricket ball reacts in play will not be affected by the internal mechanisms required to support the technology,” Roach added.
With the help of the embedded microlight chip inside, the SmartBall provides statistical data on revolutions, speed - both at release, pre-bounce and post-bounce.
It is learned that Kookaburra further plans on developing a feature where the SmartBall will help umpiring and Decision Review System process by showing whether the ball has made any slight contact with the bat or grass (in terms of close catches).
SportCor, a firm led by former Australia fast bowler and CA director Michael Kasprowicz, joined hands with Kookaburra to bring about the SmartBall innovation.