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Flashing bails launch on world's biggest cricket market after IPL success

Technology

THE flashing cricket wickets that are helping bring Twenty20 leagues to life across the globe are being aimed at the world’s biggest cricket market.

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South Australian company Zing International made global headlines when its flashing LED stumps and bails debuted at Australia’s T20 Big Bash League in 2012.

The flashing wickets are now used in almost every major limited over competition in the world and last month even featured in a match in the United States.

Manufactured at its headquarters in Adelaide, the company released its first retail products – the Backyard Zing Bails and Backyard Zing Wicket – in Australia last year.

The backyard sets have just been released in India coinciding with the successful introduction of the Zing professional wickets in the Indian Premier League this year.

Zings inventor and Director Bronte Eckermann said tapping into the Indian market was a key step forward for the company’s advancement into global retail.

“We had our first tournament in India this year in the IPL and that was quite a big thing as India begins to take up this technology in the game,” he said.

“Obviously India is a massive market – where cricket is treated like a religion – and sales tend to spike when our product is on TV being used by that country’s players. We believe there will be massive export potential there.”

The backyard bails and stumps are fitted with small LED circuits that light up when they register contact.

The bails are compatible with any backyard cricket set and sells for AUD $30 while the entire Zing backyard set is retailed at about AUD $120.

The set is a simplified representation of the more sophisticated professional product, which has International Cricket Council (ICC) approval for use in all international limited over matches.

Zing wickets are used in every major cricket nation apart from England.

According to official ICC cricket rules, a player is not given out unless both ends of the bail are free from the stump.

Zing's patented sensor technology is able to register when both ends of a bail are knocked out of a stump groove and can be tuned to pick up the gap to within 0.5mm.

Once the professional bails sense they have been dislodged, the LED lights are triggered within 1000th of a second.

Eckermann came up with the idea for the Zing bails after watching his daughter play with a ball that lit up when she threw it and also noticing the difficulties umpires faced judging close run outs.

“I ended up having a Eureka moment when I was watching the cricket and thought LED lights could fit inside a bail,” he said.

“It removes a lot of controversy from the game and adds some excitement to critical moments of the match. There’s a bit of a pizzazz with the bails flying through the air.”

Eckermann said the level of TV exposure his professional product received was the driving force behind the release of the backyard version.

He said he would consider launching his retail stumps in more countries as their popularity grew.

The Backyard Zing Bails and Backyard Zing Wickets are available online at the company’s website and can be shipped worldwide.

This is a Creative Commons story from The Lead South Australia, a news service providing stories about innovation in South Australia. Please feel free to use the story in any form of media. The story sources are linked in with the copy and all contacts are willing to talk further about the story.

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