Ringside with David Haye: Behind the scenes of Sky 3D boxing

Sky's 3D boxing coverage is "amazing". That's the view of WBA Heavyweight Champion of the World, David Haye, who was speaking with Pocket-lint during an up close and personal look at Sky's 3D boxing coverage.

And if you want to argue with him, be our guest. But remember, this is a man who has won 22 out of his 25 fights by way of knock-out.

"It makes boxing so much more entertaining, you feel like you're in the ring with the guys", said the Bermondsey-born champ. "It has really thrown boxing ahead of the game. It really is dramatic".

Haye's upcoming world-title fight with Olympic gold medallist Audley Harrison is the first time that boxing will be shown live on Sky's new 3D channel.

And Pocket-lint was at a closed-doors sparring session at Haye's South-London gym to take a look at the equipment and techniques involved.

John Dollin, Sky's product manager of 3D explained that boxing is perfect for the extra dimension because of its compact arena.

"What you find is 3D works well when you get up close to the subject matter and what you have in boxing is the cameras sitting right at the side of the ring, and it's contained as well", he said.

Dollin explained how the broadcaster had been testing 3D filming techniques within boxing for 2 years, including a test-run during a Ricky Hatton fight. He explained that Sky is now all set, with the right equipment in place for the big night.

"We're going to have between six and eight rigs", he said. "We've got cameras that will sit further back from the ring that will give you that kind of stadium view, ones that face the entrance for when the boxers come out and we've got two cameras that are going to sit above each corner".

The rigs are basically double camera set ups, programmed to capture the dual images needed for the 3D effect. A Sky technician was on hand to explain how crucial the Sony MPE200 Multi Image Processor and the correction software are during the process as well.

"The main thing it does is to keep the two pictures vertically aligned otherwise it can do horrible things to your eyes", he said. "Both of the two cameras have to be moving in complete sync, and if there's a disparity that's where the software comes in".

Pocket-lint donned a pair of the 3D specs to watch Haye going through his paces in the ring. And we have to say that boxing really does work well with the added depth. The 3D footage allows you to gauge exactly the boxer's position in the ring, and you get fantastic clarity on the punches thrown.

But hey, don't just take our word for it. Haye himself even admits that 3D will come in useful when scouting opponents and watching their footage.

"It gives you a more well rounded look at your opponent", he said. "When you actually watch it in 3D you can see more of their technique. You can feel the opponent. It doesn't feel so flat and you can actually see every movement the opponent makes".

Haye was keen to point out though, that he won't be playing up to the 3D cameras come fight-night.

"When I'm in the ring I'm very focused on what I'm doing", he said. "I probably won't be aware of it when I'm in there, but I'll definitely be the first one to run to a 3D TV to watch it afterwards".

He won't have far to go. He admitted to us that Sky had sorted him out with a system for free. Some guys have all the luck eh?

Haye v Harrison is exclusively live on Sky Box Office HD and also available on Sky 3D. To order the fight call: 08442 410 888.



>