Combined player and ball tracking technology premieres at VELUX EHF FINAL4 2019
EHF Marketing GmbH has once again joined forces with KINEXON, the German tracking and analytics company, to take the next step in handball data collection.
For the first time, the showcase event of men’s club handball, the VELUX EHF FINAL4, will offer player tracking technology which will improve overall collection of match data and provide more insights into the game. The player tracking technology will be joined by the SELECT iBall, the intelligent ball which is making a return to Cologne after the successful launch in 2018, both presented by Nord Stream 2.
Match data collection raised to new heights
During the four matches of the VELUX EHF FINAL4, tracking sensors in jerseys of all players of the four clubs (Barça Lassa, HC Vardar, Telekom Veszprém HC, PGE VIVE Kielce) and the chip in the iBall will collect an unparalleled amount of data around each match.
For the first time in the EHF competitions, fans, coaches and players will be able to see players’ running distance, playing time, fastest sprints, highest jumps and fastest goalkeeper saves.
In addition, the SELECT iBall will collect information such as ball speed, shot detection, position of the shot and placement of the ball on target.
Second-screen experience for fans
The match data will be delivered to the spectators in the LANXESS arena but also to those watching at home.
Selected data will be shown on the cube in the arena, on social media and on TV and the majority of it exclusively in the official VELUX EHF FINAL4 App. A selection of the top five fastest shots, highest jumps, fastest sprints and running distances will offer fans a second-screen experience during the weekend-long event.
An extensive report of collected match data will be provided to the participating teams giving them opportunity to have all information about the team and player performance.
How does player tracking work?
All players will be fitted with a tracking chip which will be integrated into their playing shirts. The sensor will be placed between the shoulders of the athlete, with the help of a special sports shirt. The sensor weighs only 14 grams, and therefore, is barely noticed by the players and do not influence their on-court performance.
KINEXON anchors will be placed around the court capturing the data from the sensors in the players’ shirts and the ball. Based on the wireless sensor network, the data is sent in real-time to the central database and can be accessed in real-time.
Maximilian Schmidt, Co-founder and Managing Director KINEXON said: “We are excited and proud that the EHF expands their handball performance tracking initiatives by adding automated, real-time player tracking to this year’s VELUX EHF FINAL4. After introducing the SELECT iBall last year, David Szlezak and his team prove again that they are true pioneers in bringing sports technology to handball. With our partnership, we hope to establish a new era to this fast pace, intense and honest team sport.”
David Szlezak, Managing Director of EHF Marketing GmbH said: “The introduction of player tracking technology is the next step on our digital journey as we seek to enhance the game for audiences both at home and in the arena. However, we remain consistent in our belief that handball – the sport itself – remains at the core of our offering. In addition, data is what fans are asking for and we see this as a key investment in the future of the game.”
KINEXON Sports & Media develops cutting-edge solutions for automated, real-time sports content. It brings athlete performance, media experience and entertainment formats to the next level. The portfolio includes both an unrivalled sensor technology for centimetre-accurate indoor and outdoor localisation and motion sensing of professional athletes in various sports. Moreover, the portfolio includes software solutions for smart data processing and actionable insights through various analytics. The company was founded in 2012 by scientists of the Technical University Munich. KINEXON is located in Munich (headquarters), New York City and Chicago.
About EHF Marketing GmbH
EHF Marketing GmbH is the marketing arm and subsidiary of the European Handball Federation. The company works closely with marketing and media partners, as well as with Europe’s leading clubs to realise the full potential of the sport on the international sports market. EHF Marketing GmbH is responsible for the marketing and media rights of club competitions, including the VELUX EHF Champions League, the DELO WOMEN’S EHF Champions League and the MEN’S EHF Cup. Visit ehfCL.com and ehfFINAL4.com for more information.Author: EHF/jb