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UBC Theses and Dissertations

The development of a stochastic model for predicting championship squash performance McGarry, James T.

Abstract

Sport analysis provides objective data regarding individual or team performance in the widespread belief that the information available is applicable to a future setting. Recent matches, often against different opponents, of two competitors scheduled to meet next are frequently analyzed in some form for a priori match information. An underlying assumption is that consistency in athletic performance exists, to the extent that these analyses duly inform the coaching process in preparation for the forthcoming contest. The hypothesis of this study was that an elite player's match “profile" characterizes individual playing habits in squash and can be used to accurately predict future sport performance. The data comprised the quarter-finals through final of the men's Canadian Open Championship, 1988.The hypothesis was tested through the development and application of a stochastic Markov model for predicting future competition squash match play from past performance. The results, using two way chi-square analysis, revealed consistency in individual athletic behavior between games (and also between matches) against the same opponent (p>.25), but not between matches against different opponents (p

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