Does this signal the end of linespeople in tennis?
Breaking... The USTA today announced that electronic line calling will be utilized on all tournament courts at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center for the first time at the 2018 US Open. In 2006, the US Open became the first Grand Slam event to use electronic line calling during play, featuring video replay in Arthur Ashe Stadium, and now the US Open will be the first Grand Slam to utilize electronic line calling on all match courts.In 2018, all Men’s and Women’s Singles, Doubles and Mixed Doubles events will be scheduled to feature electronic line calling technology. The thought here is having the technology available on all tournament courts provides a level of consistency and fairness throughout the tournament. Nothing released on the technical set up yet, but I'm sure that is coming, along with exact details. This technology has been in place and tested for about three years.
“Having electronic line calling on all of our courts allows us to provide a level playing field for all competitors,” said David Brewer, US Open Tournament Director. “The US Open has a history of innovation, and by becoming the first Grand Slam to feature this technology on all courts, we are proud to carry-on that tradition.”
Since 2007, the US Open’s replay challenge system has been sponsored by Chase and is called the “Chase Review” in-venue and during the domestic broadcast of the US Open. The four main stadium courts (Arthur Ashe Stadium, Louis Armstrong Stadium, Grandstand, Court 17) will house instant replay teams within each stadium. A centralized office housed inside the broadcast compound on the grounds of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center will handle the electronic line calling for all other courts. In this office, each court will be given a dedicated two-man team, consisting of a Review Official and a Hawk-Eye technician. The implementation of this technology was made possible by the Strategic Transformation of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center, which will be completed this year, as it afforded the opportunity to install the necessary technology throughout the grounds, in a cost-efficient manner.
Last year seven courts showcased electronic line calling: Arthur Ashe Stadium, Louis Armstrong Stadium (temporary structure), Grandstand, Court 17, Court 5, Court 10 and Court 13.
In addition, the 2018 US Open marks the completion of the Strategic Transformation of the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center with the opening of the new 14,000-seat Louis Armstrong Stadium. In all, the five-year project, which revamped more than 90 percent of the facility, will have incorporated the installation of a retractable roof over Arthur Ashe Stadium, the construction of a new Louis Armstrong Stadium (also with a retractable roof), a new Grandstand, new West Stadium and practice courts, as well as a completely renovated and redesigned southern campus.