The Ashes: Hot Spot dropped for series in Australia following controversial decisions

The technology came into question during the Tests earlier this year

Thursday 10 October 2013 10:54

The inventor of Hot Spot says the controversial technology will not be used in the upcoming Ashes series between Australia and England.

The infrared device has formed part of the decision review system (DRS) since 2009 but came under fire during the summer series in England when several fine edges appeared to go unnoticed.

That confusion, and financial concerns, have now swayed Australian host broadcaster Channel Nine to opt against using Hot Spot during England's trip Down Under, according to inventor Warren Brennan, who revealed Cricket Australia had not offered his company any assistance.

"It's their decision and that's what's been communicated to us. As far as I'm concerned, it is final," Brennan told the Sydney Morning Herald.

Third umpires will only have access to ball-tracking technology, slow-motion replays and audio evidence from stump microphones.

The cost of Hot Spot - Nine are reportedly charged 10,000 Australian dollars (£5,900) per day for a four-camera system - is thought to be a significant factor in the broadcaster's decision.

Brennan added: "We're just moving on with things. Channel Nine have got a new deal with Cricket Australia which I know has cost them a lot more money. I gather there had to be some restructuring of costs.

"The disappointing thing for us is that Cricket Australia didn't engage at all with us to try and come on board and help with this situation.

"We need to continue to invest and improve the product so that everybody thinks it's getting better. If bodies like Cricket Australia won't come on board and contribute to that, there's not really any point in us continuing."

Brennan admitted he was "flabbergasted" at Cricket Australia's decision, telling Sky Sports News: "It's obviously a considerable worry but the most important thing for us is to try and continue to improve the technology.

"In order to do that we need support and funding from the people that are involved in that system.

"Unfortunately we went to Cricket Australia and asked them to contribute to improvements to this product and they blatantly said no.

"We're just a little bit flabbergasted as to why they're taking that attitude."

Brennan has previously asked for the use of tape on bats to be banned, believing any protective coating diminishes the efficiency of Hot Spot.

"I think there are occasions where there's such faint touches of bat on ball that the infra-red energy generated is so small that it might not show up," he added.

"One of the instances we discovered in the UK was the effect of the plastic on the bat edges. That definitely affects the Hot Spot signature."

"If it happens to hit the front edge of the bat then it's less likely that the Hot Spot will show up but if it hits the back edge where there isn't any plastic then it'll probably be several times more noticeable."

England captain Alastair Cook and coach Andy Flower have consistently backed the use of technology in the DRS system but former captain Michael Vaughan in August called for Hot Spot to be removed from the process.

The Australian series begins in Brisbane on November 21.


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