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Weekly Roundup 09.24.2023

As I write this, Europe have just retained the Solheim Cup by recovering from 0-4 down against the USA to finish 14-14 (as Europe are the current holders they retain possession in a tie).

I really like the team match play format in golf because it provides so much space for twists and turns, as the Solheim Cup proved! It's not always great for the nerves if you are backing one side or the other but overall it can create much more exciting performances!

This week's roundup also contains some exciting things, so let's dive in.

I'm going to start with Aakarsh R's absolutely stunning circular flow chart focused on the historic results of the Ashes; a biennial series of cricket tests between England and Australia. this visualisation is so beautifully designed - I love how Aakarsh has created an inner level that has the overall result of each series, and then an outer level showing the result of each test match in each series. The use of blue and yellow throughout makes it easy to see English vs Australian victories and the infrequent red highlights for the handful of draws create a very visually intriguing element which draws the eye further in.

Former #SportsVizSunday leader Kate Brown is very passionate about golf, and she's used Tableau to explore the hardest holes at President's Golf Course, and whether the handicap strokes accurately reflect this. Kate has done a really in-depth investigation into this and used the data to great effect too. It looks very elegant in Tableau with a great design theme. I enjoyed learning a lot about handicaps and golf scoring, as well as about how the course plays for players at different handicap levels.

Rob Taylor has created this great chord diagram to show off the scores in his fantasy football draft league, using the template created by Tristan (available on his website - This is a fun use case for this diagram, and I like that Rob has really increased the insight by also combining it with a table of extra data which builds the context too. It's also a good example of how you visualisations can be inspired by a design idea which waits for the right data and story, rather than starting with a dataset.

Moving across the water and Felicia Styer has used Tableau to create a tool to simulate the end of the National Women's Soccer League. You can set the outcome of game in the remaining three weeks and see whether your team will make the playoffs or not! I really like this use of Tableau - its interactivity lends itself very well to simulations. It looks like a very close season indeed!

Tina Covelli has been collecting her gym data and tracking her heart rate and performance zones, and has explored plotting it to create a specific shape. This is an often-overlooked use of scatter plots where the position of each point doesn't have to represent a specific metric - instead it can form part of the wider design.

In another innovative use of Tableau, Terry Zhou has recreated the final of the 2019 Australian Open on a shot by shot basis. By using the x & y co-ordinates of each player and each shot, Terry has created a dashboard where you can replay every point using the Pages function. I like the simple design that Terry has overlaid with the contextual detail of which shot has been played by each player at each moment. Very effective!

There is a wealth of data created in cricket, and Ajay s has build a dashboard to show a great selection of data about each season in the Indian Premier League. Ajay's decision to only focus on high-level data - most 6s, most runs, overall winner etc - means that the dashboard is nice and focused and keeps the data easy to consume. I found the graphs showing the outcome of each match by toss decision really interesting - although most teams chose to field if they won the toss, some teams were much better than others at winning from that position!

Brett2point0 has visualised the fastest 15 plays so far in the 2023 NFL season. There is so much information in here, and using a Sankey allows for that to all be shown - from the player, the speed and whether it resulted in a touchdown or not (using the three stages of the Sankey) through to the type of play (using the colour) and the total distance of the run (the width of each bar). Brett has pulled out some fascinating insight in his post but there is so much more to explore!

Lastly, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Tennis' Battle of the Sexes Heather Jones has combined quantitative and qualitative data with artful design and motion graphics to create a very cool short video full of information about the match and it's subsequent impact. Billie Jean King's victory represented the beginning of a shift in the how people thought about women's tennis, and perhaps women's sport altogether.

That's all for this week. Don't forget about our current #SportsVizSunday challenge using data from either the Netball World Cup or the Women's World Cup if you want to try some new skills - more info here.

Mo & the #SportsVizSunday team

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