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Oz Olympic badminton has secret weapon

Australia’s Olympic badminton team in London will be armed with a secret weapon developed by RMIT University. The University has developed a statistical video tool to analyse the performance of men’s and women’s doubles teams.

The team which developed the project included Associate Professor Anthony Bedford, Dr Adrian Schembri and Bradley O’Bree, a final-year Bachelor of Statistics (Honours) student, and Lasse Bundgaard, National Head Coach, Badminton Australia.

Associate Professor Bedford said the performance videos were tagged and analysed and supplied to each athlete on iPads. He said analyses of Australian and international athletes had been conducted in preparation for the 2012 Olympics.

“Feedback about performance is given from both analysts and coaches – with assistance from this tool,” Associate Professor Bedford said.

“Matches played locally and internationally have been recorded for analysis, with feedback provided at events and during training at the Melbourne Sports and Aquatics Centre. London is where we will be implementing all this work.

“The tool works by compiling actions of the players, and opponents that lead to certain outcomes – especially when the opponents are in a defensive or point-losing position. We then compile footage of such actions together and the players and coach study how this event occurs.

“We have analysed hundreds of hours of footage of all potential opponents and await the draw – which happens only the week before the Games begin. We then produce detailed tactical reports of the opponents that will hopefully give our athletes the edge.”

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