A pitching machine first used in baseball has been adapted to help develop hurling skills.
Training for hurlers looks set to be changed with the arrival of a new pitching machine from America. The machine can fire slíotars at up to 120 miles per hour and can adapt to any training ground situation.
The pitching machine was first introduced to Major League Baseball in the early seventies. It revolutionised the game in America.
The baseball pitching machine now looks set to become part of the development of hurling skills. Slíotars have the same circumference as baseballs and the machine has now been adapted for use in training hurlers.
Machine operator Michael Hearn explains how the speed of hurling has escalated over the years and it is now more important than ever for players to be able to practise and work on the speed of their game.
This machine can pump anything up to three balls every twenty five minutes.
Waterford hurler Paul Flynn has developed a coaching programme using the machine which should help develop the skills of young hurlers. He anticipates that the machine will become a huge part of training throughout Ireland.
An RTÉ News report broadcast on 17 August 2006. The reporter is Robbie Irwin.