Sean Callanan chats with Gus Balbontin in the Tennis Lab Racquet Room to find out how they are applying high performance analysis extending Hawk-eye technology to help elite tennis players match their racquet to their game.

On this podcast you'll learn about:

  • The importance of picking the right racquet for tennis players
  • How the partnership between Tennis Australia and Victoria University came about
  • How Tennis Lab use data to help players in the racquet selection process
  • The challenges of being in the R&D space
  • Where they see the Tennis Lab heading in the future
  • How the Game Insights Group produce valuable content for Australian Open partners
Learn more about tennis with Gus Balbontin

Listen to Gus Balbontin on Sports Geek

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Our fave quote from Gus Balbontin interview

“There is such a lack of understanding of the importance of a tennis racquet in the game of tennis and for some reason completely underestimate it. “

Gus Balbontin

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About Gus Balbontin

Gus Balbontin is the Entrepreneur in Residence at Victoria University. He was the former Executive Director and CTO of Lonely Planet, a company he led globally that dominated the world of travel information in the internet and mobile.

Born in the Argentinean Patagonia, Gus dreamt of travelling the world. At 17, he won a scholarship grant that landed him a trip to Australia that eventually changed his life. This experience led him to his dream job working as a designer for Lonely Planet. After eight roles with the company and an MBA on his shoulders, he led the team that launched ebooks, apps and reinvented the content production process that has become an amazing travel brand.

Gus has worked with big corporate brands such as Google X, Nokia, Apple and Amazon in developing a cutting edge technology and business transformation.

To date, Gus continues to share his knowledge and experience in digital disruption, business transformation, business innovation and culture through keynote presentations.

Gus describes himself as a big thinker who doesn’t let life’s hurdles get in the way of big solutions.

Learn more about Gus on

Resources from the podcast

Highlights from podcast with Gus Balbontin

3:28 Gus Balbontin on what Tennis Lab does

5:35 How the partnership of Victoria University and Tennis Australia started

8:24 Gus on the process of racquet selection in the Racquet Room

11:57 Where they see the Tennis Lab heading in the near future

13:45 Why tennis players should choose the right racquet

15:11 What tennis can learn from other sports like golf in terms of product innovation

17:36 The challenges of being in the research and development space

19:05  How the Game Insights Group produce content the is valuable to Australian Open partners

26:03 Gus’ favourite moment in the Australian Open precinct

29:37 Sean will be doing the Digital to Dollars workshop at the National Sports Forum in February. Go to and use the code SportsGeek100 to get a $100 discount as a Sports Geek listener.

Go to to know more about this workshop.

34: 28 Sound of the game: Gravitas vs Dire Wolves on the League of Legends

Follow Gravitas at or @GravitasOCE on Twitter and Instagram.

Some tweets you may have missed:

The sports science behind the game

Interesting facts

Data-based predictions!

Here is Nadal's serve, you can't unsee this

Rafa in the Tennis Lab

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Nice to be at the Australian Open

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#AusOpen Rafa in action

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Join Sports Geek Nation for AMA sessions

This week on the Sports Geek Nation AMA stage we have Karen Lunn, Chief Executive Officer for the Australian Ladies Professional Golf (ALPG).

Prior to her role, Karen was a professional golfer and spent most of her career competing on the Ladies European Tour, ALPG, LAGT and the US LPGA. Her most prestigious victory came in 1993 at the Women’s British Open where she was also topped the Order of Merit.

In 1999, Karen was elected to the LET Board of Directors as a Player Director and in 2004 she was elected to the position of Chairman of the Board of Directors.

Karen also mentored many young ALPG players as well as working as a TV commentator at several women’s golf events.

Get your questions ready for Karen Lunn. Tag him at @Karen Lunn on Sports Geek Nation #ama channel in Slack.

Want to join Sports Geek Nation? Join our waitlist on and be the first to know when the subscription doors reopen.

Sports Geek Nation AMA with Karen Lunn

Thanks for the review on Apple Podcasts

I would like to meet you at NSF 2019 in Vegas

★★★★★ in Apple Podcasts by KWilson805 from USA on January 25, 2019

Congrats Sean on the purchase of the Esports franchise. I’m Kevin and I really enjoyed your first podcast of 2019 with Ron Seaver. At first I thought you cut him off a little to early, but as the podcast went on you two started to get a good rhythm going. Last year was my first year at the forum and absolutely loved it. I was a member of the NSF Business Development Sports & Entertainment group and my goal was to meet as many people as possible to eventually build some solid relationships for a future career move. I hope to challenge you on being a late-night networker and still getting up early for the morning session, but we’ll see, lol. Seriously, I would really like to meet up with you at the Forum. I will get in on Friday evening and be there through Wednesday. After listening to many of your podcasts in 2018, your knowledge of the industry is insightful and I have some thoughts to run by you about the industry. I apologize for the long review, but keep up the great work and I hope you agree to meeting up and share an adult beverage with me. Take Care, Kevin Wilson P.S. I definitely plan to attend the Digital to Dollars breakout session you’ll be leading.

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