This year’s National Premier League Tennis (NPL) finals, held in London on 10-13 September, will be processed by an AI system that immediately produces highlights for streaming on social media.
Whilst AI has been used at Wimbledon since 2017, generating highlights for the All England Lawn Tennis Championship, this is the first time such technology has been used at a semi-professional or amateur sporting event.
Peak Indicators, a UK-based data science company, has designed a system trained to identify action on court. The AI collates footage from individual points and can show an entire match without stoppage between points and games.
The system also uses Deep Learning, a feature of AI designed to mimic the human brain when processing data, to identify when the ball is in motion.
Peak Indicators said it has designed the system to be cost-effective, thereby ensuring the technology is available to a range of sporting events.
Antony Heljula, technical director at Peak Indicators, explained: “AI will transform so many areas of life, and we are keen to show that this technology can be accessible and affordable.
“Our goal for the NPL finals was to use AI and data science to provide the kind of online experience that was only available previously at Grand Slam events with professional broadcasters and big production budgets, and this event is the first real test of this new system.
“The players are excited about what we have developed, supporters will be able to see much more of the action on social media, and the tournament and its sponsors will benefit from significantly more engagement and exposure online.”