The live matchcentre on www.sixnationsrugby.com has always been a go-to online destination for rugby fans, but this season they’re are getting deeper insight than ever before with the introduction of new, real-time statistics.
Six Nations Rugby partnered with sports data and analytics company Stats Perform and the Amazon Machine Learning Solutions Lab, to combine real-time information and machine learning to build these new statistical capabilities, while Sotic’s in-house development team carried out the work to integrate to information and bring it to life on screen.
For the first time this season, rugby fans can now see a full breakdown of each team’s time in possession in particular areas of the pitch in minutes and percentages, as well as new statistics around open play such as ruck recycle speed as well as attempted tackles and dominant tackles (tackles that have actually made a difference) both by team and player.
The new stats offer genuine insight into what makes a team successful or unsuccessful, enhancing understanding for fans and commentators and in order to bring the information to the screen as quickly as possible, Sotic developed a new statistics ingest engine.
Dilwyn Reynolds, Engineering Team Lead at Sotic explains more;
“Previously we have received data from stats providers whenever something significant happens on the field of play, usually a scoring event, a try, conversion or penalty. This means that the frequency of the stats updates were determined by the stats provider.”
A better ‘real-time’ experience for fans
“As part of our work to integrate the new range of information provided by Stats Perform to sixnationsrugby.com, we developed a fetching system to request the data from them, rather than wait for it to be sent to us.
This means that even if there hasn’t been a change in the score of the game, we can update the numbers around possession, metres, tackles and carries and give the fan following the game online a better ‘real-time’ experience.
The ingest engine that we’ve developed allows us to process the scores and display them on the screen in less than 5 seconds despite the huge amount of information to process.
When Ireland hosted Wales last time out in Round 2 (8th Feb 2020) we processed 125 different statistics for each of the two teams and 41 separate statistics for every single player on the field. Every 40-60 seconds.”
Sotic have been working with Six Nations Rugby since 2008 and launched a brand new digital platform for the Championship ahead of the 2019 edition. The Six Nations Rugby website is available in 3 languages and sees traffic of up to 50,000 visitors each minute during matches.