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Four ways technology has changed sport


Technology is becoming more present in farther reaching aspects of 21st century life, it’s utilisation is now having a profound effect on how sport is adjudicated, and contested. We’ve rounded up 4 ways technology is changing the face of sport, and what knock on effects these are having, and how they might evolve with time.

Goal Line Technology

Football had got to the point where enough was enough. With such vast sums of money within the game, human error incorrectly giving or denying goals simply couldn’t be abided by anymore. Since the introduction of Goal Line Tech into the English Premier League’s 2013/14 season there has been very limited criticism of the system. Prior to it’s introduction many believed it would stunt the flow of the game. However, the speed of the technology being utilised has done no such thing, whilst fans and players alike can be happy in the knowledge that calls are being made correctly the vast majority of the time. We could well see this brought in to verify the offside rule in the coming years.

Television Match Official

Since it’s introduction in 2001 the Television Match Official(TMO) in Rugby Union has been called upon for a myriad of decisions throughout the game. The problem now being that fans and players alike feel this is seriously debilitating the overall pace of professional rugby. Many believe that referees are relying too heavily on the TMO to make their decisions, as opposed to just playing what they see, and using the TMO if they have to question something in the lead up to a try being awarded. Ideally we would like to see the referees having more conviction in their decisions, and having less dependence on the TMO.


Tennis’ use of Hawkeye has been labelled by some as flawless. By athletes questioning decisions made by officials, it not only draws them further into the game but actively engages the audience within the decision. There are still questions about whether the system is 100% accurate, which does leave leeway for the technology to continue to evolve over the coming years. We could also expect to see it roll out to lower leagues as the implementation of such tech decreases in price.

Analytics and Engineering

Formula 1 embraced a more methodical use of technology to drive their progress a lot earlier than many others. Where previously the sport revolved around a single driver; their ability; and a handful of engineers, now there are small armies or engineers and analysts working for each team. Formula 1 could be considered the first sport where the balance tips to technology over the athlete’s physical aptitude. With continued advancements in live data, combined with the unfathomably large budgets of teams competing, we can only expect this technology/ability gap to grow further.

With more tech advancement throughout the sporting world somewhat inevitable over the coming years, is this going to enhance our viewing pleasure? Are we on track to actually cause the detriment of the sports we love to watch and play with technological interference? Be sure to let us know your thoughts in the comments below!

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