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Anil Kumble  teams with Microsoft to create a cool analytical tool for batsmen

Mumbai, October 15 2018: There are  half a dozen  categories of bowler  --  leg spinner, off spinner,  medium pacer,  fast bowler,  swing bowler... but today, we recognize just two types of batspersons: left handed and right handed. Anil Kumble wants to change all that. 
The veteran  bowler, coach and cricket administrator  has founded a start-up -- Spektacom --  with the mission of  harnessing  technology to improve sport. Last week,    with help from Microsoft,  he unveiled  their first  product -- Power Bat --  a cool tool that measures the quality  of a batsman's shot  by capturing data, analyzing it in real time and  creating a unique set of analytics -- on the Cloud.
Spektacom's invention is  a tiny Internet of Things ( IoT),  sticker, the size of  a credit card, that you paste on the cricket bat that weighs  less than 5 grams. It measures the  speed, twist and swing of the bat as it contacts the ball and computes the  power that is transmitted from bat to ball on impact. Using Bluetooth, it transmits this data live to  a device called  StumpBox buried behind the wicket.  The data from the box is wirelessly sent  to the Cloud where it is analysed by  the Microsoft cloud service,  Azure after applying Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning. The result is captured by a phone app and displayed as four parameters: speed of bat in Kmph, twist in degrees,  quality as a percentage  -- depending on how close the ball touched the bat's sweet spot -- and  the overall power of the stroke  in units  called Spek. Such data,  can help teams  with  insights that will improve player performance,   as well as fan engagement, says Kumble.
Anil Kumble explains the genesis of Power Bat:
For a few days, a video  on our home page
Broadcasters   can use these insights  in real time  and can  rate   a batsman  -- which is why Star Sports has come on board as the first entity to partner with Spektacom , for future Indian cricket series. 
Unveiled  last week  in the familiar  Star studio used as the "dugout" during  IPL matches,  Power Bat was launched with a  hit for a six -- literally - by  Microsoft's  Executive Vice President Peggy Johnson,  who played to a  spinner from Kumble.  Why only cricket, we see  promise in taking the Spektacom solution to other racket sports, golf etc,   she says. And embedded in players' shoes, Star Sports is  also weighing the option of introducing it to improve skills in kabaddi  in India.  
Read Anil Kumble's blog on Power Bat here



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