Experts bat for Mathematics to bring efficacy in sports

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XLRI inaugurates 1st ever ‘MathSport Asia 2018’ Conclave

Jamshedpur, Dec. 10: Xavier School of Management kicked off the 1st ever ‘MathSport Asia 2018’ Conclave from December 10 to 12, 2018. The three-day long conference at XLRI Campus showcases research related to mathematical modelling in sports is first of its kind to be held in India.

Fr. E. Abraham S.J., Director, XLRI delivered the welcome address at the inaugural session. In his address, Fr. Abraham said, “Sports in India is both big business and democracy in action. Cricket, football, hockey and recently kabaddi have become a craze generating large revenues. Mathematics on the other hand impacts our daily life and fosters the development of new techniques to solve problems for individuals, businesses, and governments.

Mathematics also plays a large role in the efficacy of sports. Coaches across sports are constantly trying to find ways to get the most out of their athletes, and the most ingenious coaches turn to mathematics for help. One of the earliest and most successful applications of algorithmic thinking has been in professional sports. Our professors of XLRI have kickstarted this very unique MathSport Asia 2018, the first of its kind in Asia. It was heartening for us to see an overwhelming response to MathSport Asia from around the globe.” Applauding the initiative, he wished the event a great success.

The first keynote speaker of the day was Prof. Tim Swartz of Simon Fraser University, Canada who discussed about his contribution in sports analytics over the last 20 + years.

A question answer session was held with Jamshedpur Football Club player Tim Chahal. While answering the questions of the researchers, he explained about the role of analytics in football.

The speaker for the next session was Prof. Steven Stern of Bond University, Australia. Prof. Stern is the current custodian of the Duckworth-Lewis-Stern method used in cricket. He gave a presentation on rescheduling targets in run trancated matches.

The three-day long conference would have experts discuss on various topics like – Mathematical Models in Sports; Performance Measures and Models; Optimization in Sports; Statistics and Probability Models; Match Outcome Models;, Competitive Strategy; Game Theoretical Models; Optimal Tournament Design and Scheduling; Decision Support Systems; Analysis of Rules and Adjudication; Econometric Modeling of Sports; Analysis of Sporting Technologies; Mathematics Education and Sport; Computationally Intensive Methods; Financial Valuation in Sports; E-sports (gaming) and Betting and Sports.

‘MathSport Asia 2018’ is the inaugural conference of a series of biennial conferences that will be held across Asia, under the aegis of MathSport Asia – a group of academicians and practitioners interested in the promotion and development of the application of mathematics, statistics and computing in sports in Asia.

Elaborating about the novel conference, Prof. UdayDamodaran, Professor of Finance at XLRI and Conference Chair, MathSport Asia 2018 said, “Asia, the largest and most populous continent on Earth, has a long tradition of sports.

Traditional Asian Sports like wrestling and archery survive even today in forms unchanged over centuries. The globalization of sport has brought new sports, coaching techniques and methods to the continent.

MathSport Asia seeks to play the role of a catalyst in encouraging the use of Mathematical and Statistical Analysis in Sports in Asia by organizing Conferences and Workshops, by encouraging research in the area and facilitating its dissemination. MathSport Asia will also seek to promote the teaching of mathematics and statistics using sports.”

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