How Big Data is Improving The Quality of Professional Sports


According to a Statista report, the global sports industry has crossed US$ 145.34 billion mark in 2015 in terms of revenue, thus making it one of the most valuable sectors. As professional sports are gaining more popularity, the leaders of the industry are feeling the need to improve its quality to ensure that the fans are delighted and at the same time, the future of the game can be sustained.

Here are different ways how Big Data is used for improving the quality of the game and the overall fan experience.

Avoiding injury                                                           

An injury is the biggest threat for a professional sportsman’s career. Several wearable products have been developed for collecting real time data from the athlete’s body. These devices can analyse these datasets to figure out the chances of injury that the athlete is exposed to, which can be used to take appropriate measures that may save the career of the star player.

Better fan experience

Fans are the single most important factor that decides whether any tournament will be successful or not. Fans are the lifeline of any professional sport and in order to enhance the sustainability of the sport, fans must be provided with additional benefits. Several technology firms are working together to initiate measures needed to improve the experience of sports fans while they are watching a live game in the stadium by allowing them to order foods from the stands, and detecting empty parking spots when they are entering the stadium.

Better on-field decisions

Sports Vision, a USA based sports technology company, has been using the latest innovations to make things easier for the match officials of different sports to take accurate decisions, which in turn may contribute largely to promote the quality of the game. The company has recently installed the ‘Pitch f/x’ technology across 30 stadiums that host games in the Major League Baseball in USA. According to the company, this particular technology would help the umpires to make judgements based on the real-time data gathered by the same.

Sports Vision operates across a wide array of different sports other than baseball.

Let us look into the biggest mistakes committed by the match officials during a live game. These unintended mistakes later proved to be the decider of the match result.

Case study: The biggest mistakes in sports

Every sport lover wants a game to be error free and the decisions taken by the officials must be flawless. But in many cases, the situation has not been desirable. One such controversy was seen during India’s tour of Australia in 2008, when these two teams locked horns on Day 5 of the second test at Sydney on January 6, 2008.

Former Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly had just scored his 2nd consecutive half century in the match and was looking dangerous for the mighty Australians. India needed 200 more runs to win the test, which seemed possible with Ganguly and Rahul (Dravid) on the crease. Brett Lee was in charge with the ball and he was running fiercely towards the in-form batsman. He delivered at nearly 145 kilometres per hour, which kissed the edge of Ganguly’s blade, only to reach the second slip. The Australian vice-captain Michael Clarke was fielding in the slip position who made an excellent effort to reach towards the ball and complete the catch.


The umpire was not sure whether the batsman was out or not, so he asked Ricky Ponting- the Australian captain at that time, about the result. Ponting confirmed that the ball carried to the slip and Clarke did no mistake to take the catch. As a result, the umpire Mark Benson declared Ganguly out. Nevertheless, India’s most successful test captain was sure that he was not out and later the TV replay showed that the ball actually dropped on the ground before Clarke caught it. Later in that innings, three of the other Indian batsmen including Dravid, Tendulkar and VVS Laxman, also fell prey to the wrong judgements by the umpires. India was finally all out for 210 and lost the match by 122 runs.

The hand of God


Wrong decisions are not familiar in only cricket, but are also witnessed in other sports as well. Can you recall the event when the Argentinean football legend Diego Maradona scored a goal using his hand? The referees were unable to detect the handball even when the TV camera captured the event.  This goal destroyed England’s World Cup dreams of 1986 and allowed Argentina to proceed to the next round. Later that week, Argentina went on to lift the FIFA Football World Cup for the second time.

Technology at the rescue

Thankfully, we are living in an era when technology is more advanced than ever. The advent of big data certification courses have proved to be an important event for various sectors, as more professionals are entering the field of business intelligence in order to make impactful decisions that can change the world. More companies are coming forward to contribute to the welfare of the world of sports. We hope that innovations are made in order to transform each professional sport into an excellent campaign.


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