OFFALY look set to feature in the first GAA game played after the introduction of ‘Hawkeye’ if the system is cleared for use at Congress.
‘Hawkeye’ is already used in cricket and tennis as well as other sports. The system uses a number of high speed cameras in conjunction with a computer system to visually track the flight of a ball.
It had been hoped that it would be introduced sooner in the GAA but technical glitches delayed the introduction. Those glitches have now been ironed out to the satisfaction of the GAA and if it passes at Congress, it will be rolled out in Croke Park for the double header on June 1.
That means the first game to use the system will be the Leinster Senior Football Championship quarter-final between Offaly and Kildare.
Bookies Paddy Power have meanwhile opened the betting on which county will be the first to benefit from the use of Hawkeye. With the initial roll out of Hawkeye limited to Croke Park, it will come as no surprise that Leinster big guns Dublin and Kildare are the favourites to get the first score decided by the system at 7/4 and 2/1 respectively. Offaly are available at 10/3 ahead of fellow midlanders Westmeath who are at 5/1.
A Paddy Power spokesperson said “No one is happier than us to see the GAA embrace technology. Dodgy umpiring led us to pay out on both Louth and Meath winning the Leinster championship back in 2010 and hopefully Hawkeye will save us from having to do the same in future.” .
First County to get a score decided by Hawkeye 7/4 Dublin 2/1 Kildare 10/3 Offaly 5/1 Westmeath 8/1 Meath 12/1 Laois 20/1 Louth 28/1 Carlow