Coaches can now use data packed iPads to help players during WTA tennis matches
The Women’s Tennis Association (WTA) has successfully teamed up with SAP to develop analytics software for coaches, giving them and the players access to real time analytics during matches for the first time.
The SAP Tennis Analytics solution is making its debut appearance in professional tennis at the Bank of the West Classic tournament at Stanford University, California, this week.
Stacey Allaster, CEO and chairman of the WTA, said: “The WTA and SAP Tennis Analytics is a game changer that will not only enhance our athletes’ preparation and performance but also the fans’ experience when watching women’s tennis.
“We are just as competitive off the court as we are on it. And we wanted to know how we could win in the competitive sports and entertainment industry. We wanted to be the most inspirational and exciting sports entertainment business on earth.
“The key behind this is technology and data. In tennis, sometimes you get a lucky net cord, and when SAP joined us we got that lucky net cord. Together, we set out to transform women’s tennis.”
Since the introduction of the on-court technology platform last October, the WTA and SAP have tested and incorporated feedback from players and coaches at tournaments around the world. New updates now available for players and coaches include the addition of filters and pre-defined scenarios so that players can drill into the data at various levels – for example, by set, game score, winners, errors, unreturned serves, etc.; an archive mode, which allows the users to review completed match data within the same tournament; and custom-designed cases to withstand all environmental elements.
Coaches will have the opportunity to use SAP Tennis Analytics at six additional WTA events in 2015, including the Rogers Cup, Connecticut Open, Wuhan Open, Prudential Hong Kong Tennis Open, BNP Paribas WTA Finals Singapore presented by SC Global and WTA Elite Trophy in Zhuhai, China, with other tournaments slated for 2016. The WTA introduced on-court coaching in 2008 designed to further enhance the entertainment value of women’s tennis to television and live viewers. SAP Tennis Analytics for coaches is an advancement in technology for women’s tennis and part of an entire business transformation the WTA is embracing.
“In tennis, we are all about story telling and this technology is all about giving fans who’re not in the venue better access to the stories,” Allaster concluded.
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