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Electronic Line-Calling Debuts in Miami

History was made Wednesday when 14 points during Round 1 of the NASDAQ-100 Open were decided using Hawk-Eye technology.

Published March 23, 2006 12:00

Electronic Line-Calling Debuts in Miami
Brian Earley

MIAMI, FL, USA - History was made on Wednesday when 14 points during the opening round of the NASDAQ-100 Open in Miami were decided using Hawk-Eye technology on stadium court at the Crandon Park Tennis Center.

Electronic line calling made a successful debut in its first professional tennis event. Players during the course of two Sony Ericsson WTA Tour and three ATP matches challenged 14 calls. Seven were successful in reversing a call while seven were unsuccessful.

"It's gotten off to a great start and we have to continue the same way the rest of the tournament," said Gayle Bradshaw, the ATP Administrator of Rules and Competition. "Everything went really smooth."

"Our players are really excited about the new system," said Angie Cunningham, Sony Ericsson WTA Tour VP of On-Site Operations & Player Relations. "Judging by the reaction of fans so far, this new technology is going to make watching tennis more entertaining than ever."

The honor of making the first challenge under the new system goes to American Jamea Jackson, who unsuccessfully challenged a decision in the 57th minute of her match against countrywoman Ashley Harkleroad.

"I was wrong," said Jackson. "The first one I thought was wide but I just wanted to try it. I thought it was great. I loved it. It was fun. I just wanted to be the first. That's what it was really all about."

Harkleroad made the first successful challenge when she challenged a line call in the second set.

Nicolas Massu became the first ATP player to make a challenge during the opening set of his match against Raemon Sluiter. The Chilean successful with his challenge.

During the final match of the day, Belgium's Xavier Malisse defeated Ecuador's Nicolas Lapentti, 36 63 60, despite the Ecuadorian lodging four successful challenges compared to one from Malisse.

When a player challenged a call, the official replay was provided to the chair umpire and simultaneously to the television broadcast and in-stadium video boards. The result of the challenge was then shown simultaneously to players, officials, television viewers and fans.

"After seeing how it went today, people thought it would slow things down but it actually helped speed up the game," Bradshaw said. "The time it took was under 10 seconds."

With the on-court player challenge system for review of line calls, each player will receive two challenges per set to review line calls. If the player is correct with a challenge, then the player retains the same number of challenges. If the player is incorrect with a challenge, then one of the challenges is lost. During a tie-break game in any set, each player will receive one additional challenge. Challenges may not be carried over from one set to another.

DAY 1 REVIEW BY THE NUMBERS
No. of Challenges Made: 14
No of Successful Challenges: 7
No of Unsuccessful Challenges: 7
Challenges made by ATP players: 8 (Successful 6 Unsuccessful 2)
Challenges made by Sony Ericsson WTA Tour players: 6 (Successful 1 Unsuccessful 5)

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