‘This is the nature of genius, to be able to grasp the knowable even when no one else recognizes that it is present.'
HBA have conceived and registered what has been recognized in the British press as the most viable alternative to one of Sport's biggest conundrums, Football's Penalty Shoot out. In September 2006, FIFA President Sepp Blatter said: - "When it comes to the World Cup Finals it is passion, and when it goes to extra time it is drama, but when it comes to penalty kicks it is tragedy."
In January 2008 HBA presented a solution, The Advantage, to senior executives at FIFA's headquarters in Zurich. It was very well received and is still under consideration.
The public reaction was extremely positive. Daily Express Sports Editor Bill Bradshaw dedicated two pages to the Advantage, including a back page sports headline ‘Shoot-outs put on the spot'. Bradshaw wrote:
‘The new proposal is the brainchild of an Englishman who has worked on his tiebreaker, called The Advantage, for the last four years. Henry Birtles is the man who could rewrite the way cup ties are settled... He presented his brilliantly simple proposal to FIFA last month and sources have told the Daily Express that it was warmly received...If FIFA want to end the years of frustration and the perennial claims of unfairness associated with the shoot-out, they will grasp Birtles' big idea. The Advantage is brilliant; it is simple and it will be only good for the game...The Advantage speaks for itself.'