April 12, 2014

Team performance analysis in T20 internationals

Who defends well and who chases a target better?
38

Sri Lanka - perched at the top of the performance table - are the most successful team in T20 internationals © ICC

I do not like the IPL. The reasons are mostly non-cricketing in nature. Regular readers will know the reasons since these have been expounded often in these columns. This will be the only negative reference in this article. Let us move on.

However, the T20 internationals are something else. Money does not drive teams and players there. What drives them is their national pride. No scandal of any sort has been associated with T20Is. Most matches are great contests between teams. Of late, the bowlers, especially the spinners, have had their days in the sun and under the moon. So the bottom line is that I have a lot of time for T20Is. The icing on the cake is that the five World T20s have been won by different teams. None of the teams have dominated the game for long. The timing is just about perfect. A World T20 has just about finished and around 400 matches have been played.

Another aspect of T20Is is also the precise nature of the game. As someone who has analysed almost every aspect of all the three formats, I find the T20I format is the one that lends itself to clarity of thinking and almost perfect analysis. I have not been wholly fair to this format. During the past 12 months at the Cordon, I haven't done a single article on T20Is. It is time to redress the balance now. And the fact is that as I went deeper into the analysis, I was amazed at the way the colour of my analysis kept changing. Even purists will find the analysis very interesting and meaningful.

First let me outline some of the facts that are special to the game. In all the examples I have taken that the first batting team scored 160 runs.

1. The two types of wins: the win by the first batting team by runs and the win by the second batting team, normally by wickets, are like chalk and cheese.

2. The First batting team's win is easier to analyse. The margin of victory, by runs, is clearly defined. It does not matter how many wickets are lost. It is what is achieved in 20 overs that matters. If the second batting team scores 120 runs, the win is by 40 runs and the win margin is 25%. If the second batting team scores 150 runs, the win margin is 6.67%. If the second batting team scores 159 runs, the win margin is 0.67%. A 161/1 win against 160/9 will have a margin of 0.67%. A 161/9 win against 120/1 win will have a margin of 25%. Probably obvious to all.

3. D/L interruptions could still lead to wins by runs. If the D/L target is 120 and the second team's innings was terminated at 102, the win margin is 15%. If the D/L target is 120 and the second team's innings was terminated at 132, the win margin is 10%. No problems there also.

4. Now we come to the much more complex situations in which teams win by chasing targets. The problem is that there are two independent resources available: ten wickets and 120 balls. I will show later that one of these resources is a far more limiting and difficult resource to handle than the other.

5. There is a fundamental weakness in the way these wins are reported. When we read that a team won by eight wickets, we think the win was quite comfortable. When we read that a team won by two wickets, we think the win was tough. While this could be true, it need not necessarily be the case. It is my considered conclusion that T20 wins by teams batting second should be reported as "Australia won by six wickets and three balls", or "England won by two wickets and 14 balls" and so on. Why? Please consider the following fairly loaded statement. Let us assume that the winning stroke was a single.

6. I would very confidently say that "161 for 2 in 20 overs" is a tighter win than "161 for 4 in 19.5 overs" which, in turn, is a tighter win than "161 for 7 in 19.4 overs". It is simple. If that single had not been scored off the last ball, the first match would have been a tie (and possibly a Super Over). In the second match there was another ball and in the third match there were two more balls to achieve that single. Now tell me, which win was more nerve-wracking. But the report says "win by eight wickets", "win by six wickets" and "win by two wickets".

7. The ball resource is the far more limiting one than the wicket resource. I am not saying that wickets are not important but it is more likely that the ball resource would prove to be an exhausted resource than the wickets. Proof?

8. The basic fact is that there are only 120 balls. The average balls per wicket value for 400 matches is 17.6. Thus only 6.8 wickets could be captured, on an average, in a 120-ball innings. Considering only second innings in a match, since the first innings always goes on to 120 balls (and over 90% of the innings last this long), there have been 74 all-out situations and 194 120-ball situations. The all-out number is well below half of the 120-ball number.

9. I also believe, after viewing a number of T20Is, that there is no clear home advantage. The format is such that such advantages are negated. Mitchell Johnson is king in Australia but then he is allowed to bowl only four overs. The recent breed of players - the T20-adapters-cum-specialists - have also gone a long way in negating these benefits. Finally the fact that an extraordinarily high 192 matches, out of 400, have been played on neutral grounds should settle the home/away issue once and for all.

The reason why I have gone into such detail is because the analysis uses all these facts and conclusions.

Since we have not yet captured the ball-by-ball data, I can go only by my notes, inferences, common sense and knowledge of the game. It is my firm belief that the T20 game is split into three parts: the first-six Powerplay overs, the nine middle consolidating overs and the finishing five overs. My rough calculations lead me to work on the basis that during the three phases, equal resources are expended. That means that 66.67% of resources are available at the end of Powerplays and 33.33% of resources are available at the end of the 15th over. If you take a typical T20 innings, this pattern is repeated. The team would score about 50 runs in the first 6 overs, 50 in the middle phase and round off with 50 in the last one. Of course Netherlands scored 80 odd in the PP and West Indies scored 80 odd in the last five overs. But these are outliers.

This information is essential since I have to determine the resource available at any time in the innings, in the case of second team wins. The other important conclusion is that there is no great change in the scoring pattern in the first two phases. The first over is likely to yield as many runs as the third over. Similarly one does not expect a spurt between the 10th and 13th overs. So these over resources are linearly decayed. But clearly each of the overs after 15 is likely to produce more runs than the previous one. So the resource during this period is geometrically decayed. This has been done using a decay value of 0.986578 from balls 91-120. This sets the resource available at the end of 120th ball at 0.0 and 90th ball at 33.33%.

The graph below is self-explanatory. It can be seen that the decay in the first and second segments is straight and the third one is geometric.

Now, some important facts on the T20I game as it stands now.

1. Out of the 400 matches, two matches were washed out after the toss without a ball being bowled. Of these, ten ended in no-result situation, including four early matches where a Super Over was not used to decide the winner.

2. Out of the other 388 matches, 200 matches were won by the team batting first and 188 matches were won by teams batting second. Thus there is a slight edge (3%) in wins to the teams batting first.

3. For the second team wins, the wicket resource available is calculated using the values 82.5%, 61.1%, 54.6%, 42.0%, 31.2%, 22.6%, 15.6%, 9.8%, 4.7% and 0.0% as the resources available at the end of the fall of the first to tenth wickets. These are derived from the matches.

4. Out of the matches decided on D/L basis, eight were won by teams batting first, all by runs. The other eight matches were won by the second batting teams. Three of these wins were by the normal method of winning by wickets. However the other five matches present a peculiar occurrence. The rain cut short the matches and the D/L were decided afterwards. All were wins by runs, by the teams batting second.

5. The point I had already made regarding the limiting factor of ball-resource as against wicket-resource can be best demonstrated using one stunning fact. Out of the 188 matches that were won by teams batting second, there is only one match in which the wicket-resources available at the end of the match was lower than the ball-resources. This is the match between UAE and Zimbabwe in the recently concluded World T20. The scores were UAE: 116 for 9 in 20. Zimbabwe: 118 for 5 in 13.4. The wicket-resource available was 31.2% and the ball-resource available was 38.3%. In the other 187 matches, the wicket-resource available was higher than the ball-resource. I do not think there has been a more emphatic statistic to decide a point of view.

6. Eight teams, batting first, won by one run. The highest victory margin was Sri Lanka's 172-run win over Kenya in the 2007 World T20.

7. Teams that batted second won on the last ball of the match on 19 occasions. Since no ball was left in the match to determine a win resource available value for these teams, the margin of victory has been taken as one ball. The wicket resource remaining does not mean anything, as we have already seen.

T. The biggest unutilised ball resource was during Sri Lanka's recent demolition of Netherlands in the World T20 - they still had 90 balls left: a whopping 72.2% of resources were still available.

Resource determination

The methodology for the win margin percentage is summarized below.

- First batting team wins: The formula 100.0*run margin/target is used. This applies to the D/L matches also.

- All wins through a tied match and Super Over are treated as x-run wins where x is the single over difference in runs. This information is available for two matches. For the other two matches the run margin is taken as two.

- Second batting team wins: The values of the wicket resource and the ball resource available at the end of the match are determined and the lower of these two values is taken as the win margin. Enough explanation has already been given on this. Whichever is the limiting resource is used.

- For D/L wins by the second batting team by runs, the formula 100.0*run-margin/second-innings-score is used.

I have given below the win margin percentage for the last-three matches of the World T20, matches which are still fresh in our memory.

- SF: SL won by 27 runs (D/L). SL - 25.2% (27/107)
- SF: Ind won by 6 wkts and 5 balls. Ind - 6.5% (100.0*(1.0-0.986578^5))
- F : SL won by 6 wkts and 13 balls. SL - 16.1% (100.0*(1.0-0.986578^13))

Let me put these numbers in another way. What could Sri Lanka have chased? This is one occasion when it is necessary to consider the number of wicketa in hand. They had enough. My projection for them is 160 (134/(1.00-.161). So it is clear that Sri Lanka could easily have chased a target up to 155, it would have been a toss-up for targets between 155 and 165 and anything above 165 would have made India favourites. This is one nice fall out of this analysis.

This is possibly the longest preamble I have ever done. But I am certain this will not have put any reader to sleep. It took me three days just to write this. So do not expect to assimilate this in three minutes. Now let us go on to the tables.

1. Team Performance summary (Min 30 matches)
Team Matches Wins N/R Losses Perf % Avge Margin
Sri Lanka664212368.2%19.18%
Pakistan825013164.0%17.33%
India513012063.7%14.50%
South Africa704212760.7%15.52%
Ireland362021458.3%19.10%
West Indies633033052.4%19.04%
Australia733713552.1%24.94%
England723343550.7%17.65%
New Zealand753543649.3%16.41%
Bangladesh401102927.5%18.95%
Zimbabwe31 612421.0%21.32%

Sri Lanka lead the Performance table, based on the tried and trusted 2-1-0 points allocation, with an additional tweak. The World T20 winners get an additional three points and the runners-up get one point. Sri Lanka have a very good 68.2% performance index value, above the outstanding two-thirds achievement mark. Pakistan are next, some distance behind. India follow closely behind in third position. These three teams, and South Africa, have a performance index exceeding 60%. Ireland are a welcome top-five entry. Despite their single World T20 win, England have been ordinary.

The last column is the average of the margin achieved in the matches won. This an indicator of the comfort with which wins were achieved. Australia are in the lead by a huge margin. Their average margin is a huge 24.9%. This indicates that when they win, they win well. If we ignore Zimbabwe, with their high average, albeit in six matches, Ireland are right at the top, with 19.1%. Then come West Indies and Sri Lanka. India are in the last position, with 14.5%. This means that they had more narrow wins than other teams.

2. Team Results summary - First Bat & Second Bat (Min 30 matches)
Team Matches Wins FB Wins FBW % SB Wins SBW %
Pakistan82503162.0%1938.0%
New Zealand75351748.6%1851.4%
Australia73371848.6%1951.4%
England72331545.5%1854.5%
South Africa70422559.5%1740.5%
Sri Lanka66422559.5%1740.5%
West Indies63301963.3%1136.7%
India51301446.7%1653.3%
Bangladesh4011 436.4% 763.6%
Ireland3620 735.0%1365.0%
Zimbabwe31 6 350.0% 350.0%

This table splits the wins into first batting and second batting classifications. The table is ordered on the number of matches. Pakistan are a very strong defending team with 62% of their wins having been achieved batting first. West Indies have a still higher first batting win percentage. South Africa and Sri Lanka also have first batting wins of around 60%. These are the four teams which have excellent bowling combinations and this is borne out by these numbers.

Bangladesh and Ireland have had a lot more chasing wins. The other teams are around the middle. India have a 10% edge in chasing wins.

3. First Batting Results analysis (Min 10 wins)
Team FB Wins Tot Mrgn Runs Avge Mrgn Runs All-10-wkts LT-10-wkts Avge Margin %
Australia18 819 45.510 824.19%
England15 582 38.8 51021.69%
West Indies19 668 35.2 81021.32%
Pakistan311094 35.3121820.49%
Sri Lanka25 834 33.4 91620.34%
India14 388 27.7 6 816.60%
New Zealand17 477 28.1 41215.36%
South Africa25 525 21.0 42113.34%

When Australia won, they win very well. Their average margin is 24.2%, Also look at their average run-margin: a whopping 45. England have similar numbers. And West Indies too. Pakistan have had a lot of first-batting wins and have average run-margin in excess of 35 and win margin exceeding 20%. South Africa is at the bottom of the table with 21 and 12.9%.

Australia dismissed teams on ten occasions and contained them eight times. England could dismiss teams only five times. West Indies are approximately even in this. Pakistan have contained more than dismissed teams. The same applies for the other teams. Come to think of it, only Australia have had more wins by dismissing the opposition batsmen than containing them.

4. Second Batting Results analysis (Min 10 wins)
Team SB Wins TotWkts AvgeWkts AvgeWktsRes% TotBalls AvgeBalls Avge Margin %
Australia191286.755.2%44823.625.66%
Ireland13 745.744.1%24018.519.92%
South Africa171136.653.6%29817.518.72%
Sri Lanka171015.945.3%25114.817.47%
New Zealand181015.643.8%27215.117.40%
West Indies11 696.346.4%13111.915.10%
England181136.348.8%22612.614.28%
Netherlands11 575.236.5%13412.213.56%
India161056.650.4%16910.612.67%
Pakistan191025.438.4%20310.712.19%

Australia are again the leaders by a country mile, with an average margin of 25.7%. Their average win has been by 6.7 wickets and by 24 balls. Very impressive figures, indeed! India and South Africa have average wins by 6.6 wickets. Ireland are right at the top. If anyone says they did not face top teams, let us agree that they faced teams of matching strength, as all Test-playing teams did. Pakistan have had low average margin percentage. Interesting fact is the average win by only 11 balls for India and Pakistan.

T20 World Cup 2014

Two teams entered the World T20 with huge albatrosses around their necks. One succeeded in sending off the bird and the other did not.

South Africa had the big white bird emblazoned "semi-finalists" around their collective necks. At the end of the tournament they still had the bird firmly entrenched. Another semi-final and another different result await them. The Sri Lankan bird had "eternal bridesmaid" in big blue letters on it. In 200 minutes of faultless cricket they managed to send the bird off flying.

A much-loved team, at home and away, two great gentlemen cricketers playing their last game in this format, Sri Lanka's success was very well received and appreciated. As already mentioned, they were the fifth team to win the title, in five different World T20s. The match was won in the first four and last four overs of the Indian innings: 34 runs, two wickets and one four in eight overs bowled by Nuwan Kulasekara, Angelo Mathews, Sachithra Senanayake and Lasith Malinga tells the story.

It is sad that Yuvraj Singh is being blamed by all and sundry. He might have played poorly, but the others were not much better. How can one batsman get the blame when the well-set Virat Kohli and the master finisher MS Dhoni could not do anything? Give credit to the bowlers and stop at that. In the last 27 balls; the following is the story.

Kohli: 10 balls - 8 runs
Yuvraj: 10 balls - 5 runs
Dhoni: 7 balls - 4 runs

I hope that Australia or South Africa or New Zealand win the next World T20 to round-off a perfect half-dozen. I will also extend my coverage of a format that is an analyst's delight.

To download/view the complete list of the 398 T20-I matches, please CLICK HERE. My take is that many of the questions can be answered if you download this file and view the contents.

Anantha Narayanan has written for ESPNcricinfo and CastrolCricket and worked with a number of companies on their cricket performance ratings-related systems

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Mutukisna on April 14, 2014, 22:35 GMT

    Brilliant analysis, Mr Narayanan. You have redefined the margin of victory concept. I can buy in to the concept of " balls to spare" against "wickets to spare" when the winning team bats second. It is a better reflection of the result in the T20 game. Hope the Cricket world adopts it. You have utilised similar "drill down" techniques as employed by businesses when analysing profits by business divisions, profit centres, going down to individual products and units etc.if I may say so. Hope your work extends to ODIs as well. Finally, your conclusions on the Sri Lanka T20 victory are spot on.It won't be long before a contract of employment is despatched to you by an IPL franchise or even a country's cricket control body.
    [[
    If ever I receive a contract from an IPL franchise, very low chances of that happening anyhow, it will be politely returned with due words of appreciation. Many thanks for your kind words and your drawing parallel business analytics.
    One has to be careful about ODIs. The wicket-resource is more valuable. However, my dear friend, Milind. has defined an excellent concept of "ball difference" for ODIs and that might be the ultimate word in determining the win margins.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • CodandChips on April 14, 2014, 6:01 GMT

    Brilliant article. It's great to see analysis like this. I have often felt that balls remaining are more important than wickets. This is certainly true now that many teams have long lineups. This is where I think Duckworth-Lewis is a bit off. Take England West Indies 2010 where 190-6 was followed by a revised target of 70 in 6 overs. To me at the time it seemed unfair (or is this just English sour grapes).
    [[
    Sean, D/L seems to place too much emphasis on wickets as a resource. The balls available and already utilized does not get sufficient weight.
    RE match no. 158, you have given up a run and another wicket. England was 191 for 5. ANd the target was not 70. Then England would have won. It was only 60 in 6. That, I think, was woefully less. England scored at 9.55 in 20 overs and West Indies was given a target at 10.0 over 6 overs. Something was totally wrong. I would have put the target at 70-75 in 6 overs.
    Ananth
    ]]
    With the T20 game evolving is this reflected in the stats you've calculated? Is there an obvious change over time?
    [[
    The major changes I have seen are the fact that the 200+ scores are not there. One reason could very well be that very few matches are played in India. But the bowlers are learning new tricks. Some of the slow bouncers were amazing. I hope this trend does not change when the WC comes to India.
    Ananth
    ]]
    The point about home advantage is an interesting one. No country has won WT20 at home. India won it in South Africa where they are supposed to struggle. Pakistan in England. However please don't forget Sri Lanka cruised to the home final where their defeat was very surprising. But conditions can be irrelevant. in English domestic T20 spin is always crucial. But then again my team Hants prepared turners to suit Afridi, Tahir, Briggs
    [[
    And let us not forget the master a few years back.
    Ananth
    ]]
    Article appreciated- Codandchips

  • tearisle on April 13, 2014, 19:55 GMT

    Spot on Mr.Ananth the response to gandhabhai a very stereotyped Indian fan who just watches the final because everyone does so, without even knowing how many members are their in a cricket team. Just take a look at the way Sri lanka bowled in the tournament The Netherlands 39 all out, New Zealand 60 all out,west indies 80 for 4 in 13.5 overs when rain stopped play they too were heading in that direction had it not rained they would not have scored 100, ah and then the all important final, Virat kohli was dropped at 11 by malinga a sitter, had that been taken it would have been curtains for india they would have been all out for around 90 or 95. thats reality lets not run around making scapegoats of very talented cricketers. Sri lanka were the deserving winners they were the most consistant and the impact team of the tournament.
    [[
    As I have said, if we do not know how to give credit to other deserving teams/players, we do not deserve to take credit. This applies in all spheres of life and sports. If I do not understand and appreciate the greatness of Nadal and Djokovic, my admiration for Federer is fickle.
    Sri Lankan bowling efforts were the best seen in a World event so far. Just one blip, that is all. And the batting may not have been spectacular but very efficient. I salute them as I am sure many Sri Lankans would have saluted India in 2011.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • SLSup on April 13, 2014, 16:21 GMT

    Now that I've had some time to digest the article, few points: A) The fact that balls matter as much in T20I's tells us how much MORE heart, mind, and body is required in this format compared to ODIs or Tests. B) That T20I's causes players FOCUS MORE IN THE MOMENT - which can extend to their overall performance as players - which can impact their ODI & Test performances possitively. C) There is a CONSTANCE in T20I's: It doesn't matter to SL whether they bat first or bowl first. D) Ireland needs more exposure at Internatlonal level in 4 & 3 Day formats. E) The debate over Tests & T20's is a matter of preference only since both formats excites in their own ways at some personal level. Let's just say T20's is NOT TANTRIC! Question to Anantha: Why not extend the basis of your T20 analysis to include all ODIs and Tests? That would be an incredibly grand effort! Reaction to Harry31: Kohli scored 24 in his first 30 balls (with a 4 & a 6 & a dropped chance). Momentum?
    [[
    Many thanks for a well-constructed comment. You have got the essence of T20s in your points.
    The basis of T20 analysis can be extended at bet to ODIs, not Tests. I have tackled Tests in another form already.
    The balls are less significant in ODIs. There is enough time to recover from a 30-ball-20. I have seen many an innings from Jayawardene, Misbah, Dhoni, Md Youssuf, Dravid, Kallis, Ponting in which they have built big innings from pedestrian starts.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • rizwan1981 on April 13, 2014, 15:35 GMT

    As a SriLankan it was a huge relief to win the T20 after being the perennial bridesmaid on numerous instances. Before the game, I was nervous because I knew IF the Indian juggernaut got its act together, it would have been a blitzkrieg in the death overs. But a combination of factors (excellent bowling by Malinga, brilliant captaincy by the unofficial Skipper Mahela and sheer bad luck on the part of Yuvraj and Dhoni) helped SL to snatch victory. I also got the impression that Dhoni was not his usual self - Perhaps , the IPL scandal was weighing on Dhoni's mind ? It was nice to see the hot headed Virat ( the stand out performer of the tournament )congratulating Sanga even before the match winning hit by Thissara. Take a bow Virat , you were fantastic.
    [[
    While confessing that I am often disturbed by Kohli's aggression, I will second you on that. For Kohi to swallow the bitter pill of a great innings being reduced to a supporting act and congratulating Sanga, even before the match was completed, was heart-warming. That instant I realized that there was much more to this young giant than the external appearances show.
    Having said that, and as a great admirer of Jayawardene and Sanga, I felt they should have held their horses a bit after the WC. There was really no need to sour the very positive situation.
    Ananth
    ]]
    I must admit that though the win was satisfying, I would trade the hit and giggle trophy for the 2011 World Cup any day of the year. Hopefully, Mahela and Sanga will win the real and proper world cup in 2015

  • sifter132 on April 12, 2014, 11:25 GMT

    Yes, as an Aussie fan these numbers just stick the knife in further! Everyone can see the talent Australia potentially has in this format. Half the time that talent comes together and pummels the opposition, but the other half of the time is a perplexing malaise. Good on you Ananth for having a crack at T20 stats. I think T20 numbers are ripe for the picking. I'm sure the franchises have their own stats they look for. Would be intrigued to find out what they are...You mentioned the reporting of results ie. still using the traditional wickets as margin of victory. Individual stats often get the same treatment. If you get 3/35 you can be 'pick of the bowlers' when a guy taking 1/15 has done a far more effective job in my view. Same for top order batsmen who get high scores eg. Aaron Finch's 65 off 54 vs Pakistan was a valuable innings on first glance at the scorecard, but in reality was too slow. His scratching in the 10-15 over range put Australia behind the rate.
    [[
    Australia in T20s is as much of an enigma as South Africa is. When you look at their wins, you wonder why they have not won the important tournament yet. In a tough stats scenario, they lead in both forms of wins. My personal feeling is that George Bailey is the wrong captain. Maybe they should take the bull by the horns and make Maxwell the captain.
    Milind, may his tribe flourish, has given me the raw T20 ball-by-ball data. I will get it organized soon. Then many interesting analyses are possible. We can analyse seemingly great innings from the way the innings was paced. Was it a 20 in 30 + 60 in 30 innings or 40 in 30 + 40 in 30 innings. How often did the batsmen get bogged down. And so on. Re the bowlers, the sky is the limit. We can determine the golden deliveries, like the four in Steyn's last over. Maidens, to which batsman, are another thing. Did the maiden over change a batsman with 10 in 10 to 10 in 16 or 20 in 14 to 20 in 20. And the timing of the same.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • on April 12, 2014, 8:28 GMT

    I watched most of the matches of the first T20 on television when it was introduced in England country cricket in 2003. There the general trend (i remember Some commentators often mentioning) was that the first 10 overs were more productive than the last 10. Also the 75 minute innings limit made for fascinating viewing. Ian Harvey's century chasing a total of 135 was greeted then with great euphoria. Viewed 10 years from then, this format has evolved and as you suggested the innings structure in International matches now resembles more of a one day innings. Also the best part is now we see a clear difference of level between international matches and those taking place in numerous leagues. I also believe that cricket administrators should try to make T20 an olympic sport (though they failed miserably in this regard in the Common wealth games). Also I believe that super over concept should be used only in knock out matches. Let the tie be significant.
    [[
    You will see that the late over increase I have put in is very minimal. 33.33% over 30 balls as against 33.33% over 36 balls in the beginning.
    I agree with you that the SOE must be there only for WC knock-out matches. Not even the early league matches. Let the teams share 2 points. There is a charm in that. And why cannot series be drawn.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • MilPand on April 20, 2014, 9:38 GMT

    India played 42 overs instead of 50. So 327 is scaled down using match best fit curves to 296 which means India had to chase 297 for victory. My calculations are off by 1 run which means either some of the constants I used are different from ICC version or my implementation is wrong.

    But the match stopped after 41.3 overs. Par score at that stage is 293 which means winning score is 294. India scored only 277 runs at that stage (more than NZ's 271) but lost because "NZ would have gone harder if they knew from the start they would only have 42".

    I get a 16 run loss (293-277) but official version is 'New Zealand won by 15 runs (D/L method)'.

  • MilPand on April 20, 2014, 9:19 GMT

    The D/L exponential equation is : Z(u,w) = Z0(w) [ 1-exp{-b(w)u } ]

    where Z is the score in u overs where w wickets have been taken. Par value for Z is 245 for a 50 over match.

    We begin by calculating Z for lost overs.

    Par Z for 16.4 overs & 2 wkts = 119. Par Z for 08.4 overs & 2 wkts = 72.97

    Effective resources lost 46.03 which means resources used is 198.97 out of 245.

    271 actually scored in 42 overs. Nearly 199 resources used out of 245. Using both we determine 50 over equivalent as 327. Note that D/L equations do not require NZ score after 33.2 overs just the wickets lost at that stage because the model uses balls remaining and wickets remaining. Actual final score and G50 value of 245 are used to find the best fit for that match.

    Revised Z with match values for 16.4 overs & 2 wkts = 137.36 Revised Z with match values for 08.4 overs & 2 wkts = 80.5

    Res lost = 56.86 or Res used = 327-56.86 = 270.98

    The tiny difference with 271 will also be used to determine India's target.

  • MilPand on April 20, 2014, 9:18 GMT

    SLSup: Glad to note that you find DL the best fit for most situations instead of Notworth. You dislike it and in my opinion it is a beautiful method. Whatever I dislike about the ODI version is trivial as compared to the parts I like. I have not used any T20 example because I don't know of any model that accounts for the scoring pattern of this format.

    Regarding your point about scoring more than the opposing team let us review ODI 3458 between NZ and Ind. After 33.2 overs, NZ lost 2 wkts. NZ batted for 8.4 overs out of remaining 16.4 as the match was reduced to 42 overs. NZ scored 271 eventually. Extract from match commentary:

    Michael: "So NZ and India get the same number of overs? No D/L Formula for this? Surely NZ would have gone harder if they knew from the start they would only have 42?" No Michael, New Zealand's total at the end of 42 overs will be scaled up by the D/L method.

    Will provide some details not of significant interest but attimes such additional information helps.

  • Mutukisna on April 14, 2014, 22:35 GMT

    Brilliant analysis, Mr Narayanan. You have redefined the margin of victory concept. I can buy in to the concept of " balls to spare" against "wickets to spare" when the winning team bats second. It is a better reflection of the result in the T20 game. Hope the Cricket world adopts it. You have utilised similar "drill down" techniques as employed by businesses when analysing profits by business divisions, profit centres, going down to individual products and units etc.if I may say so. Hope your work extends to ODIs as well. Finally, your conclusions on the Sri Lanka T20 victory are spot on.It won't be long before a contract of employment is despatched to you by an IPL franchise or even a country's cricket control body.
    [[
    If ever I receive a contract from an IPL franchise, very low chances of that happening anyhow, it will be politely returned with due words of appreciation. Many thanks for your kind words and your drawing parallel business analytics.
    One has to be careful about ODIs. The wicket-resource is more valuable. However, my dear friend, Milind. has defined an excellent concept of "ball difference" for ODIs and that might be the ultimate word in determining the win margins.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • CodandChips on April 14, 2014, 6:01 GMT

    Brilliant article. It's great to see analysis like this. I have often felt that balls remaining are more important than wickets. This is certainly true now that many teams have long lineups. This is where I think Duckworth-Lewis is a bit off. Take England West Indies 2010 where 190-6 was followed by a revised target of 70 in 6 overs. To me at the time it seemed unfair (or is this just English sour grapes).
    [[
    Sean, D/L seems to place too much emphasis on wickets as a resource. The balls available and already utilized does not get sufficient weight.
    RE match no. 158, you have given up a run and another wicket. England was 191 for 5. ANd the target was not 70. Then England would have won. It was only 60 in 6. That, I think, was woefully less. England scored at 9.55 in 20 overs and West Indies was given a target at 10.0 over 6 overs. Something was totally wrong. I would have put the target at 70-75 in 6 overs.
    Ananth
    ]]
    With the T20 game evolving is this reflected in the stats you've calculated? Is there an obvious change over time?
    [[
    The major changes I have seen are the fact that the 200+ scores are not there. One reason could very well be that very few matches are played in India. But the bowlers are learning new tricks. Some of the slow bouncers were amazing. I hope this trend does not change when the WC comes to India.
    Ananth
    ]]
    The point about home advantage is an interesting one. No country has won WT20 at home. India won it in South Africa where they are supposed to struggle. Pakistan in England. However please don't forget Sri Lanka cruised to the home final where their defeat was very surprising. But conditions can be irrelevant. in English domestic T20 spin is always crucial. But then again my team Hants prepared turners to suit Afridi, Tahir, Briggs
    [[
    And let us not forget the master a few years back.
    Ananth
    ]]
    Article appreciated- Codandchips

  • tearisle on April 13, 2014, 19:55 GMT

    Spot on Mr.Ananth the response to gandhabhai a very stereotyped Indian fan who just watches the final because everyone does so, without even knowing how many members are their in a cricket team. Just take a look at the way Sri lanka bowled in the tournament The Netherlands 39 all out, New Zealand 60 all out,west indies 80 for 4 in 13.5 overs when rain stopped play they too were heading in that direction had it not rained they would not have scored 100, ah and then the all important final, Virat kohli was dropped at 11 by malinga a sitter, had that been taken it would have been curtains for india they would have been all out for around 90 or 95. thats reality lets not run around making scapegoats of very talented cricketers. Sri lanka were the deserving winners they were the most consistant and the impact team of the tournament.
    [[
    As I have said, if we do not know how to give credit to other deserving teams/players, we do not deserve to take credit. This applies in all spheres of life and sports. If I do not understand and appreciate the greatness of Nadal and Djokovic, my admiration for Federer is fickle.
    Sri Lankan bowling efforts were the best seen in a World event so far. Just one blip, that is all. And the batting may not have been spectacular but very efficient. I salute them as I am sure many Sri Lankans would have saluted India in 2011.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • SLSup on April 13, 2014, 16:21 GMT

    Now that I've had some time to digest the article, few points: A) The fact that balls matter as much in T20I's tells us how much MORE heart, mind, and body is required in this format compared to ODIs or Tests. B) That T20I's causes players FOCUS MORE IN THE MOMENT - which can extend to their overall performance as players - which can impact their ODI & Test performances possitively. C) There is a CONSTANCE in T20I's: It doesn't matter to SL whether they bat first or bowl first. D) Ireland needs more exposure at Internatlonal level in 4 & 3 Day formats. E) The debate over Tests & T20's is a matter of preference only since both formats excites in their own ways at some personal level. Let's just say T20's is NOT TANTRIC! Question to Anantha: Why not extend the basis of your T20 analysis to include all ODIs and Tests? That would be an incredibly grand effort! Reaction to Harry31: Kohli scored 24 in his first 30 balls (with a 4 & a 6 & a dropped chance). Momentum?
    [[
    Many thanks for a well-constructed comment. You have got the essence of T20s in your points.
    The basis of T20 analysis can be extended at bet to ODIs, not Tests. I have tackled Tests in another form already.
    The balls are less significant in ODIs. There is enough time to recover from a 30-ball-20. I have seen many an innings from Jayawardene, Misbah, Dhoni, Md Youssuf, Dravid, Kallis, Ponting in which they have built big innings from pedestrian starts.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • rizwan1981 on April 13, 2014, 15:35 GMT

    As a SriLankan it was a huge relief to win the T20 after being the perennial bridesmaid on numerous instances. Before the game, I was nervous because I knew IF the Indian juggernaut got its act together, it would have been a blitzkrieg in the death overs. But a combination of factors (excellent bowling by Malinga, brilliant captaincy by the unofficial Skipper Mahela and sheer bad luck on the part of Yuvraj and Dhoni) helped SL to snatch victory. I also got the impression that Dhoni was not his usual self - Perhaps , the IPL scandal was weighing on Dhoni's mind ? It was nice to see the hot headed Virat ( the stand out performer of the tournament )congratulating Sanga even before the match winning hit by Thissara. Take a bow Virat , you were fantastic.
    [[
    While confessing that I am often disturbed by Kohli's aggression, I will second you on that. For Kohi to swallow the bitter pill of a great innings being reduced to a supporting act and congratulating Sanga, even before the match was completed, was heart-warming. That instant I realized that there was much more to this young giant than the external appearances show.
    Having said that, and as a great admirer of Jayawardene and Sanga, I felt they should have held their horses a bit after the WC. There was really no need to sour the very positive situation.
    Ananth
    ]]
    I must admit that though the win was satisfying, I would trade the hit and giggle trophy for the 2011 World Cup any day of the year. Hopefully, Mahela and Sanga will win the real and proper world cup in 2015

  • sifter132 on April 12, 2014, 11:25 GMT

    Yes, as an Aussie fan these numbers just stick the knife in further! Everyone can see the talent Australia potentially has in this format. Half the time that talent comes together and pummels the opposition, but the other half of the time is a perplexing malaise. Good on you Ananth for having a crack at T20 stats. I think T20 numbers are ripe for the picking. I'm sure the franchises have their own stats they look for. Would be intrigued to find out what they are...You mentioned the reporting of results ie. still using the traditional wickets as margin of victory. Individual stats often get the same treatment. If you get 3/35 you can be 'pick of the bowlers' when a guy taking 1/15 has done a far more effective job in my view. Same for top order batsmen who get high scores eg. Aaron Finch's 65 off 54 vs Pakistan was a valuable innings on first glance at the scorecard, but in reality was too slow. His scratching in the 10-15 over range put Australia behind the rate.
    [[
    Australia in T20s is as much of an enigma as South Africa is. When you look at their wins, you wonder why they have not won the important tournament yet. In a tough stats scenario, they lead in both forms of wins. My personal feeling is that George Bailey is the wrong captain. Maybe they should take the bull by the horns and make Maxwell the captain.
    Milind, may his tribe flourish, has given me the raw T20 ball-by-ball data. I will get it organized soon. Then many interesting analyses are possible. We can analyse seemingly great innings from the way the innings was paced. Was it a 20 in 30 + 60 in 30 innings or 40 in 30 + 40 in 30 innings. How often did the batsmen get bogged down. And so on. Re the bowlers, the sky is the limit. We can determine the golden deliveries, like the four in Steyn's last over. Maidens, to which batsman, are another thing. Did the maiden over change a batsman with 10 in 10 to 10 in 16 or 20 in 14 to 20 in 20. And the timing of the same.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • on April 12, 2014, 8:28 GMT

    I watched most of the matches of the first T20 on television when it was introduced in England country cricket in 2003. There the general trend (i remember Some commentators often mentioning) was that the first 10 overs were more productive than the last 10. Also the 75 minute innings limit made for fascinating viewing. Ian Harvey's century chasing a total of 135 was greeted then with great euphoria. Viewed 10 years from then, this format has evolved and as you suggested the innings structure in International matches now resembles more of a one day innings. Also the best part is now we see a clear difference of level between international matches and those taking place in numerous leagues. I also believe that cricket administrators should try to make T20 an olympic sport (though they failed miserably in this regard in the Common wealth games). Also I believe that super over concept should be used only in knock out matches. Let the tie be significant.
    [[
    You will see that the late over increase I have put in is very minimal. 33.33% over 30 balls as against 33.33% over 36 balls in the beginning.
    I agree with you that the SOE must be there only for WC knock-out matches. Not even the early league matches. Let the teams share 2 points. There is a charm in that. And why cannot series be drawn.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • MilPand on April 20, 2014, 9:38 GMT

    India played 42 overs instead of 50. So 327 is scaled down using match best fit curves to 296 which means India had to chase 297 for victory. My calculations are off by 1 run which means either some of the constants I used are different from ICC version or my implementation is wrong.

    But the match stopped after 41.3 overs. Par score at that stage is 293 which means winning score is 294. India scored only 277 runs at that stage (more than NZ's 271) but lost because "NZ would have gone harder if they knew from the start they would only have 42".

    I get a 16 run loss (293-277) but official version is 'New Zealand won by 15 runs (D/L method)'.

  • MilPand on April 20, 2014, 9:19 GMT

    The D/L exponential equation is : Z(u,w) = Z0(w) [ 1-exp{-b(w)u } ]

    where Z is the score in u overs where w wickets have been taken. Par value for Z is 245 for a 50 over match.

    We begin by calculating Z for lost overs.

    Par Z for 16.4 overs & 2 wkts = 119. Par Z for 08.4 overs & 2 wkts = 72.97

    Effective resources lost 46.03 which means resources used is 198.97 out of 245.

    271 actually scored in 42 overs. Nearly 199 resources used out of 245. Using both we determine 50 over equivalent as 327. Note that D/L equations do not require NZ score after 33.2 overs just the wickets lost at that stage because the model uses balls remaining and wickets remaining. Actual final score and G50 value of 245 are used to find the best fit for that match.

    Revised Z with match values for 16.4 overs & 2 wkts = 137.36 Revised Z with match values for 08.4 overs & 2 wkts = 80.5

    Res lost = 56.86 or Res used = 327-56.86 = 270.98

    The tiny difference with 271 will also be used to determine India's target.

  • MilPand on April 20, 2014, 9:18 GMT

    SLSup: Glad to note that you find DL the best fit for most situations instead of Notworth. You dislike it and in my opinion it is a beautiful method. Whatever I dislike about the ODI version is trivial as compared to the parts I like. I have not used any T20 example because I don't know of any model that accounts for the scoring pattern of this format.

    Regarding your point about scoring more than the opposing team let us review ODI 3458 between NZ and Ind. After 33.2 overs, NZ lost 2 wkts. NZ batted for 8.4 overs out of remaining 16.4 as the match was reduced to 42 overs. NZ scored 271 eventually. Extract from match commentary:

    Michael: "So NZ and India get the same number of overs? No D/L Formula for this? Surely NZ would have gone harder if they knew from the start they would only have 42?" No Michael, New Zealand's total at the end of 42 overs will be scaled up by the D/L method.

    Will provide some details not of significant interest but attimes such additional information helps.

  • SLSup on April 18, 2014, 14:56 GMT

    Response to MilPand & Anantha: It is not unreasonable to say DL is "deemed the best fit for most situation" compared to others and that it is "not possible to tweak" a method in situations that are more questionable/objectionable than others. Fair enough. I like Anantha's thought on the two of you working on something together, albeit as a "theoretical" exercise. : ) Your readers are REAL and when a method becomes LAW it is because the game's governing body DEEMED FIT to go with one over the other. It doesn't have to mean they settled on the best. WE KNOW WHAT THE PROBLEMS ARE WITH DL. And ALL THINGS EXIST AS THOUGHTS FIRST. Everything around you was once a thought. THOUGHTS, even if are only "theoretical" is relevant and useful. ICC need not validate a system to establish it's practical worth. Your time spent on developing a new method will be time well spent THAN the time spent doing other things when you know there HAS to be a better way!
    [[
    When we can find time to devote some extended time.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • SLSup on April 18, 2014, 3:22 GMT

    MilPand: Unlike Natwar who thought this public forum his personal inbox, I thank you for your time and appreciate your opinion - even though it is contrarian to my views! Aha! G50 is a generic concept that is admittedly flawed per D & L themselves. But it is ESSENTIAL to DL Method. There is no arguing the method is consistent in its application but (as Anantha noted) a method that his brillance wholeheartedly diagrees with in SOME aspects is flawed at some level. Your intelligence cannot miss that! DL moves away from the primary objective of scoring more than the opposing team to setting targets that ARE speculative and objectionable. Its objectionable BECAUSE it is arbitrary. CONSISTENT in application, Yes, yet through means that were/are contentious and arbitrary. To your point that DL Method is excellent - any thing can be shown to excel based on point-of-reference. Hence, your comparison between methods. I dislike DL. A wicket is a greater interruption at times than rain.
    [[
    My apologies. However the apologies must come from Cricinfo. Despite my telling them many times, they keep on publishing the comments on my articles and if I am lucky, they would revoke the publication so that I could re-publish. Else I would not even know.
    My opinion of D/L is in between yours and Milind's. There have times I have agreed with it whole-heartedly. There have been times when I felt it was completely wrong. However I have more problems in T20s rather than ODIs because the wickets are nowhere as important in T20s as in ODIs. Instead of just tweaking the ODI model, they should have got a new one for T20s, from scratch. I am sure that, if Milind and I put our mind on it, we could develop such a system from scratch. The problem is it would end up as a perfect theoretical exercise.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • MilPand on April 17, 2014, 12:31 GMT

    In Feb 2012, I commented about D/L & VJD here - http://www.espncricinfo.com/blogs/content/story/620850.html . Back then I was not sure about the variables used in Professional edition but these are in public domain now. Online documentation has not been updated though. Read http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Duckworth%E2%80%93Lewis_method to understand that there are 2 versions of D/L, standard and professional. It states 'in the Professional Edition Team 2's target score is simply increased in proportion to the increase in total resources when R2>R1, and there is no G50'. In fact G50 is very much a part of the professional edition.

    Without understanding the nuances, it is easy to question the base value of 245. It should be noted that it goes along with several other constants and has been deemed the best fit for most situations by two very wise and honourable gentlemen. So we can't tweak it slightly to fix it only for the few occasions where we disagree with the end results.

  • MilPand on April 17, 2014, 12:29 GMT

    If India had scored 119/0, this 50 over value would become 286 because 119 is higher than par score of 92. Worst case scenario of 119/9 would translate to 125 because 119 is much lower than the par score of 234.

    Both systems ignore all that happened prior to 119 in 29. Both models attempt to derive an equivalent score based on actual overs. Neither system aims to speculate what would happen if the match continued. Both are applying the same set of equations fairly to summarise the match situation. D/L uses all three known values of runs scored, balls played and wickets lost which also means that it is not that simple. Simple it may not be, excellent it is.

  • MilPand on April 17, 2014, 12:25 GMT

    D/L does not assume to "know" variables it cannot possibly account for. In fact it is very similar to the system that uses 200 in 50 @4 an over.

    India scored 119/3 after 29 in ODI # 3387. We will use this example to find out a 50 over equivalent score. (SL had a target of 178 from 26 overs but that is irrelevant in this example). This run-rate method, which does not differentiate between 119/0 and 119/9, uses a linear equation y = mx where m is the run rate of 4.10 and x is the number of overs which is 50. Thus we get 205 as the equivalent 50 over score.

    D/L uses an exponentional equation iteratively for best fit where both wickets and runrate are taken into account along with number of interruptions and the precise score at each point. It uses a G50 constant of 245, some other values and one exponential equation to determine a 'par score' of 118 for India. India scored 119 fairly close to 118. So we get a 50 over equivalent of 246 instead of 245 (our G50 constant).

  • SLSup on April 15, 2014, 16:01 GMT

    Reaction to Anantha's response on DL Method: Glad you WHOLEHEARTEDLY disagree with SOME aspects of DL. Now I don't have to spend the rest of my life wondering what happened! I think the DL intent is pure but the method IS flawed because it assumes to "know" variables it cannot possibly account for. NZ with interruption got to 270 + while without interruptions they could have gotten out for 220 without completing all 50 overs. Whose to kow? - not Duckworth & Lewis! Projections are just that, projections. There is a reason I engage in comparisons and not predictions/projections. Wonder if anyone's ever carried out an extensive pro's & cons on DL Method.
    [[
    There was a far better D/L equivalent created by Jayadevan. However it got lost somewhere. Probably BCCI did not put their considerable weight behind the system.
    Ananth
    ]]
    Reaction to Charith99: Weeks before World T20 Mahela/Sanga had said this would be their final WT20. Just as 2015 WC will be there last. MANY other players have done so in the past. It was Sanath's public utterences as Chairman of Selectors that was a disgrace. SLC was mad they lost upper-hand when players offered to play w/out money.

  • Charith99 on April 15, 2014, 10:42 GMT

    as a big fan of your articles even from the it figures days i know for a fact that you never idolize sachin like many other indians. i do admire sachin a lot and i think he has being a wonderful icon for cricket in general.however never making a controversial comment and never criticizing anyone should not be considered as a good thing because the current state in indian cricket can not be that rosy and wonderfull.Regarding mahela and sanga's outburst it could not have come at a better time, eventhough we won the cup the whole of sri lanka knew that the win was achieved by the players without any help from the pathetic administration.win or lose sl fans have never thrown stones at players or their houses because we know our players have played for us with or without their salaries.sanga and mahela have guided youngsters even better off the field.i do not mind even if this comment is not published but i wanted you to know the truth of the situation from one of your loyal fans.

  • on April 15, 2014, 8:30 GMT

    @SLSup: I didn't send anything to your inbox, you were completely free to ignore my comments. So you having a headache is only your problem. And BTW, where did you see any justification of stoning Yuvi's house in my comment? You have to be open to other's opinion, else don't read them. I am myself a big fan of Yuvi, but that does not mean I would never criticize him, even if it is his mistake. Coming to the facts, Kohli was not 24 off 30 balls, he was 31 of 30 balls. And that did not include slapping a full toss to a boundary rider. My point was that Ananth picked up last 27 balls and tried to show that Kohli and Dhoni were no better, and I disagree with it. As your names suggests, if you are a SL fan and were upset that I am taking the credit away from SL bowlers, rest easy. Full credit to them, but the points remains that Yuvi stalled India's momentum, and not for the first time in the tournament (or recent past, for that matter), either.

  • SLSup on April 15, 2014, 4:49 GMT

    Response to Anantha: It appears I have found an area I can HIGHLY DISAGREE with you - if not completely. Taking for granted NZ inning was disrupted more than India's (in the example discussed), the inturruption could ALSO have been (as in the natural course of many games) due to losing wickets as well! (and not necessarily due to good bowling either). DL Method fails due to its lack of simplicity. It assumes recognized batsmen ALWAYS account MORE for wins while it disregards the very point of the game in needing to score more than the opposition to win. The BIGGEST flaw in DL is that it assumes it can account for variables in cricket when it cannot. I like the old method. Team A scores 200 in 50 @ 4 an over (say 20 in the last over). Team B ends up 191 for 1 in 48 overs tp lose by 1 run. Whose to say what the outcome would be if overs 49 & 50 were played? Not Duckworth & Lewis! That Steyn's final over against NZ in the World T20 makes NO SENSE according to DL Method. I DISLIKE it : )
    [[
    There are many D/L targets I whole-heartedly disagree with. However this time I think they had got it alomst correct, maybe a few runs more, that is all. There is an element of guesswork involved when we look at situations like "playing with 50 overs in mind" and "playing with 42 overs in mind". It would have been grossly unfair if India had been set a target of 272 in 42. Instead they were set 292, that is all. The target could have been 285 but not lower.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • SLSup on April 15, 2014, 3:29 GMT

    Reaction to Natwar Modani: Your persistent argument to prove Yuvi screwed it up for India has given me a headache. Yet, you've made a simplistic argument that is brilliant - only if it were extended to to the entire Indian inning! Kohli not only failed to build a momentum (24 in 30 balls - which included 10 in 2 balls, meaning 14 in 28 balls?) but also as Anantha pointed out, Kohli scored 8 in 10 balls in the death! Let's see - that's 6.2 overs for 22! SOMEHOW, it is the 19 Kohli scored in 10 WHEN COMPARED TO YUVI while he was at the wicket that counts! Haha. You gotta be kidding me! And then we hear Yuvi's house was stoned. It is this kind of mindless, heartless, and hapless thinking that reduces the game (and humanity) to NOTHING. CodlandChips: Duckworth Lewis is "bit off"? Haha. It is WAY OFF! Example: in a recent IND/NZ game, India SCORED MORE THAN NZ CHASING AND LOST! That kills the FIRST PRINCIPLE OF CRICKET! I call it Notworth Lewis Method.
    [[
    That was a tough match for any system. With two rain breaks, New Zealand's innings was disrupted quite a bit and they had to be compensated to some extent. The compensation was not that high. I think that was a fair target, considering that India had a single stretch of 41.3 overs.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • rizwan1981 on April 14, 2014, 20:45 GMT

    Ananth, I concur- Mahela & Sanga (M&S) should have been circumspect. Both the Aiyyas (Sinhalese for elder brothers) have been wonderful players. But they are not sacred cows (like someone else across the Palk Strait who retired recently)-A case in point was when M&S chose to take part in IPL instead of travelling with the rest of the squad to acclimatize and get used to the nippy English weather in May 2011 (which was on the back of the worst winter in a century).The two big guns arrived in old blighty a few days before the test & failed miserably. In the first test the M&S were the only players in the top 7 who did not score at least a 50 (WK P.Jayewardene scored a 100). Its sad to see that the loyalty of the Players lie with clubs rather than the national team.. The New Testament was spot on ' money is the root of all evil'.I would like to end on a bright note, '' suba aluth awuruddak wewa (Happy New Year)
    [[
    Many thanks for the wishes. I may not accept the "holy cow" status of SRT. However one must accept that Tendulkar, in a 24 year career, never ever created a single controversy, never made a loose comment, never criticized one person and went out with all grace. There is a lot for other players to learn from him in this regard, in addition to his unparallelled playing methods.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • CodandChips on April 14, 2014, 15:22 GMT

    @Anantha Narayanan my point about the poor state of T20I seam bowling wasn't referring to WT20. Just T20I cricket in general. Re my request the initial idea was a comparison between the English batsmen who have played regularly in recent times, namely Trott, Cook, Bell, Morgan, Bopara and Root (perhaps Buttler as well). But I understand that you need to do analysis on areas of interest to you and your readers, and not just to please just one person. But thanks for responding to the comments, I guess you are a true writer for the people.
    [[
    I have no problem in doing something special for you and mailing to you since it might not be of interest to all and sundry. But I need your mailid for that. You could let me know that your mailid shown in this comment (s......n@gmail) is the correct one. You could just confirm this in a comment.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • CodandChips on April 14, 2014, 8:53 GMT

    @Anantha Narayanan

    The lack of 200+ scores is interesting. Does it refer to less now or less when T20Is were introduced? Personally I would have felt that bowling ruled the game when England won in 2010 and Pakistan in 2009. But currently I'd have thought it is a batsman's game. How many quality seamers are there in T20Is? Malinga and Kulasekera, but both can be hot and cold, as can Steyn. Finn was ranked highly. I feel current death bowling is generally poor
    [[
    I think the Bangladesh wickets were slow.
    Ananth
    ]]
    Please could you consider a future article about the utility of English batsmen in ODIs. What I mean by this how much they contribute to team success when they bat well. So take Cook, Bell, Trott and Morgan. Considering there is some debate over personell in the line-up, it'd be nice to see how each batsman scoring runs, be it hundreds or fifties, contributes to a big team score (be it nominally or big for a specific ground) or team victory. I understand if you don't want to due to lack of interest, or the difficulty of it.
    [[
    No problems at all, Sean. I could do an article covering all teams and look at contributions from leading players.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • on April 14, 2014, 7:21 GMT

    [contd from previous comment] Another point, during the period of Over 15 start to the point Yuvi got out, Kohli played only 1 dot ball (and 3 boundaries), but Yuvi played 9 dot balls. This allowed the bowlers to settle down and bowl better. Another point is that what was counted as a dot balls for Yuvi were also completely unscored off, where as there were 1 wide and couple of byes/leg byes off the balls faced by Dhoni/Kohli. So I think it is completely unfair to say that Kohli/Dhoni were also equally bad as Yuvi.

  • on April 14, 2014, 5:24 GMT

    If you put it all down to statistics, you can loose the point. And here is a perfect example. If you look at the end of over 14, India were 93/2, having taken 10 runs from Malinga over, including a last ball four courtesy Kohli (with Kohli 55 from 44 and Yuvi 5 of 6). No problem here. Over 15, Yuvi takes 5 balls (and first strike in the over), and scores one run (Kohli scores a single of the only ball he faces. India again take 16 from the next over, where Kohli took first strike and for 5 balls. Yuvi took a single on the only ball he faced. Over 17, again Yuvi faces first up, and takes only 2 runs from the 4 balls he faced. In over 18, again, India manage only 4, where Yuvi took only 2 of the four balls, and Kohli takes two single of the two he faced. Next ball, Yuvi gets out to a rank full toss. So between start of over 15, and the point Yuvi got out, 25 balls, India score 26 runs. Contributions: Kohli 19 of 10 balls in this period and Yuvi 6 runs of 15 balls. Continued...

  • SLSup on April 13, 2014, 17:41 GMT

    Anantha, you thank me for a well constructed comment but it was your work that made is possible for me to SEE to be able to construct my comments. Your HSI, too, made me consider the relevance of algorithmic comparisons that I had previously thought not useful at all. So... many thanks for your considered inputs as well as your continuous engagement with your readers. That makes ALL the difference. It shows to readers what they say matters and is considered, regardless of the style and point of their input. Elsewhere, I cannot feel but as if I am punching the air. More importantly, the fact that you comment not only make EVERYONE's comments relevant but perhaps also necessary to read - just to experience and learn from all viewpoints. At some level, it also says that you take your work seriously than other contributors to Cricinfo. I hope they realize that.
    [[
    Thanks for the compliments. This is probably the 20th time I say this. The readers have made me and the blog. If I wanted to I could write for someone else but the readers, I will not get. And I respect the readers a lot. That is the reason why when someone insults me or other readers or other players, I see red. I openly tell him that I do not want him in this blogspace. I tell my wife that I have a big family of readers out there and I mean it.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • Naikan on April 13, 2014, 17:30 GMT

    Dear Sir AN ( kindly accept my reference as Sir - you truly deserve a knighting of some kind for the analysis that you keep churning out). I have been reading most of your analysis (some I may have missed out because I feel it gets moved away from screen 1, earlier than it should). Of all the series that you have done so far, I found this easier on my nerves to read (as I did not have to see super fans baiting each other as much here). Having said that the conceptual part of this T20I analysis is so deep and revolutionary that I cannot counter or offer any personal angles without actually doing some digging of my own and o-boy that is going to take so much time, I may never come back (like trying to find the value of pi - hehe). So kudos again for this and I hope you have more coming on T20Is.
    [[
    Mohan, It is not as complex as it seems. My suggestion is that you read each numbered point, think over it, assimilate it and then move on. Barring the Geometric progression which is a purely mathematical concept, the other ideas are cricketing ones and should not present major problems in understanding. For example, once you understand why a 7-wicket win may not be as comfortable as it seems and a 3-wicket win might be more comfortable than the 7-wicket win, half the battle is won. ALl the best.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • EngineerKhan on April 13, 2014, 15:32 GMT

    Very good article and I am really happy to see your comments on Final of recently concluded World T20. Virat Kohli and Dhoni themselves failed to push the accelerator plus I can never comprehend why wasn't Suresh Raina sent in ahead of Yuvraj? (Anyways, its over) Indeed its beauty of World T20 that every year it has been won by a unique team. Also (barring 2012's edition and considering PakvInd bowl-out in 2007 as Draw) every World T20's Runner-Up team was unbeaten till the Final while Winners atleast lost one game before reaching the Final. Its unlike the totally one-sided dominance of Aussies in 50-over World Cup! Simply awesome tournament!

  • on April 13, 2014, 12:46 GMT

    T20 is the future of cricket without a doubt. It brings more parity ( 5 winners in 5 world cups says it all) and gives so called minnows to also cause an upset or two. Fast forward 20 to 30 years, T20 will be the dominant format if not the only serious format of the game.

  • Lion_96 on April 13, 2014, 7:26 GMT

    Sri Lanka have been exceptional in this format, since that loss against WI in 2012. If im not mistaken, they won close to 65% of T20Is between the end of the 2012 WT20 and the end of the recently concluded 2014 WT20. So it was only fitting that we won, considering our success in the format and our performances in ICC events since 2007. One more point to note; notice how the Asian teams dominate the format? All three (IND 2007, PAK 2009 & SL 2014) have now won the tournament. Each team has contested in two or more Finals in the WT20. Conversely, its ENG, SAF & AUS struggle in this format but play really well in Tests. In other words the Top 3 T20 Teams and the Top 3 Test Teams are completely different. T20s has allowed traditionally weaker Test Sides to dominate this particular format. All in all great for World Cricket. Plz Publish! Thanks!
    [[
    There is no need to tell me "plz publish". I will always publish any comment as long as the commenter respects the blogspace. It is clear that teams like Australia and South Africa have not yet found the consistent winning formulae. These two, and New Zealand somehow find it difficult to put together a run of 2/3 top-level performances.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • Harry31j on April 13, 2014, 5:59 GMT

    Can you please tell me what is your average margin for Ind vs WI game this world cup? Ind won by just 2 balls but by 7 wickets. I'm interested in seeing what exactly the margin turns out to be, because to me, despite the last over finish, it looked like a walkover. Also don't agree with you on Yuvi debate. Even if I think all the blame doesn't lie with him, he did suck out all the momentum out of the inning. In t20 momentum matters a lot. I know all this is hypothetical, but I think if Ind had not lost momentum, we'd have scored much more, because there would have been pressure on SL bowlers. Even when he was not under much pressure, Kula still bowled a high full toss. How bad would his bowling have been if Ind were actively going against SL bowling?
    [[
    I am only saying that the others also have to share the blame.
    2.7% of balls resource and 54.6% of wicket-resource still available. However when only 2 balls are left, the 3 wickets lost do not mean much. India would have better off scoring 130 for 5 in 19 overs.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • gandabhai on April 12, 2014, 20:35 GMT

    @ priceless, Apart from Sri lankans, The rest of the world saw UV losing the world cup and not Sri lanka winning it. Sorry to burst your bubble matey boy . And, In the 2007 -20/20, 2011-50/50, Last champions trophy and the last 20/20, India were by far the best team in each of those tournaments. Sad for you guys but never the less TRUE !
    [[
    The problem with some Indian supporters is that it is always a one-way street. If India won, it is because of their skills. If India lost it was because one Indian player lost it. It is the reluctance to give the other team credit that many Indian followers seem chauvinistic and narrow-minded.
    The indisputed fact is that Sri Lanka is a worthy, deserving and popular T20 World Champion. Just as India is a worthy, deserving and popular ODI World Champion. You cannot ask for one if you are unwilling to recognize the other.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • SLSup on April 12, 2014, 18:58 GMT

    Was glad to read the reference to Yuvraj and the need to give credit to SL bowlers in that World T20 final. I thought it was unbecoming of not just regular folks but the so called commentators and pundits of the game to castigate Yuvraj as the scapegoat on whom all sins were to be placed. That was RIDICULOUS and LAUGHABLE!

  • CricIndia208 on April 12, 2014, 18:34 GMT


    [[
    Mr. Raj Balakrishnan
    Your comment will be published only if the same is made in civil and acceptable language. Otherwise the chances of your comment seeing the light of day is less than that of Trott hitting six sixes in an over to win a T20 game.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • fayyaz03 on April 12, 2014, 8:49 GMT

    Dear Anantha, Is it possible for you to write something on hypothetical analysis about the former greats playing T20 in their old days??? It will be interesting to know the T20 economy rates of Sydney Barnes, Charles Turner, Dennis Lille, Michael Holding, Joel Garner, Waqar Younis, Wasim Akram. Similarily it would be great to see the T20 batting average and strike rates of Don Bradman, Len Hutton, Jack Hobbs, Gary Sobers, Greg Chapel, Javed Miandad.
    [[
    Not possible at all. What would be the basis?
    Ananth
    ]]

  • soumyas on April 12, 2014, 8:14 GMT

    @priceless1 ... "escape goat"....new term....Hmmmm....

  • priceless1 on April 12, 2014, 7:11 GMT

    Indian fans were just looking to use some one as the escape goat to put the blame on because by nature they don't want to admit that opposition Team was far better than their Team

  • DRS_Flawed_NeedsImprovement on April 12, 2014, 6:46 GMT

    is this new trend? saying "i dont like ipl" like terms before writing any column in cricinfo. If someone dont like something, let that go! can Write about what likeSh Uh!

  • DRS_Flawed_NeedsImprovement on April 12, 2014, 6:46 GMT

    is this new trend? saying "i dont like ipl" like terms before writing any column in cricinfo. If someone dont like something, let that go! can Write about what likeSh Uh!

  • priceless1 on April 12, 2014, 7:11 GMT

    Indian fans were just looking to use some one as the escape goat to put the blame on because by nature they don't want to admit that opposition Team was far better than their Team

  • soumyas on April 12, 2014, 8:14 GMT

    @priceless1 ... "escape goat"....new term....Hmmmm....

  • fayyaz03 on April 12, 2014, 8:49 GMT

    Dear Anantha, Is it possible for you to write something on hypothetical analysis about the former greats playing T20 in their old days??? It will be interesting to know the T20 economy rates of Sydney Barnes, Charles Turner, Dennis Lille, Michael Holding, Joel Garner, Waqar Younis, Wasim Akram. Similarily it would be great to see the T20 batting average and strike rates of Don Bradman, Len Hutton, Jack Hobbs, Gary Sobers, Greg Chapel, Javed Miandad.
    [[
    Not possible at all. What would be the basis?
    Ananth
    ]]

  • CricIndia208 on April 12, 2014, 18:34 GMT


    [[
    Mr. Raj Balakrishnan
    Your comment will be published only if the same is made in civil and acceptable language. Otherwise the chances of your comment seeing the light of day is less than that of Trott hitting six sixes in an over to win a T20 game.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • SLSup on April 12, 2014, 18:58 GMT

    Was glad to read the reference to Yuvraj and the need to give credit to SL bowlers in that World T20 final. I thought it was unbecoming of not just regular folks but the so called commentators and pundits of the game to castigate Yuvraj as the scapegoat on whom all sins were to be placed. That was RIDICULOUS and LAUGHABLE!

  • gandabhai on April 12, 2014, 20:35 GMT

    @ priceless, Apart from Sri lankans, The rest of the world saw UV losing the world cup and not Sri lanka winning it. Sorry to burst your bubble matey boy . And, In the 2007 -20/20, 2011-50/50, Last champions trophy and the last 20/20, India were by far the best team in each of those tournaments. Sad for you guys but never the less TRUE !
    [[
    The problem with some Indian supporters is that it is always a one-way street. If India won, it is because of their skills. If India lost it was because one Indian player lost it. It is the reluctance to give the other team credit that many Indian followers seem chauvinistic and narrow-minded.
    The indisputed fact is that Sri Lanka is a worthy, deserving and popular T20 World Champion. Just as India is a worthy, deserving and popular ODI World Champion. You cannot ask for one if you are unwilling to recognize the other.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • Harry31j on April 13, 2014, 5:59 GMT

    Can you please tell me what is your average margin for Ind vs WI game this world cup? Ind won by just 2 balls but by 7 wickets. I'm interested in seeing what exactly the margin turns out to be, because to me, despite the last over finish, it looked like a walkover. Also don't agree with you on Yuvi debate. Even if I think all the blame doesn't lie with him, he did suck out all the momentum out of the inning. In t20 momentum matters a lot. I know all this is hypothetical, but I think if Ind had not lost momentum, we'd have scored much more, because there would have been pressure on SL bowlers. Even when he was not under much pressure, Kula still bowled a high full toss. How bad would his bowling have been if Ind were actively going against SL bowling?
    [[
    I am only saying that the others also have to share the blame.
    2.7% of balls resource and 54.6% of wicket-resource still available. However when only 2 balls are left, the 3 wickets lost do not mean much. India would have better off scoring 130 for 5 in 19 overs.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • Lion_96 on April 13, 2014, 7:26 GMT

    Sri Lanka have been exceptional in this format, since that loss against WI in 2012. If im not mistaken, they won close to 65% of T20Is between the end of the 2012 WT20 and the end of the recently concluded 2014 WT20. So it was only fitting that we won, considering our success in the format and our performances in ICC events since 2007. One more point to note; notice how the Asian teams dominate the format? All three (IND 2007, PAK 2009 & SL 2014) have now won the tournament. Each team has contested in two or more Finals in the WT20. Conversely, its ENG, SAF & AUS struggle in this format but play really well in Tests. In other words the Top 3 T20 Teams and the Top 3 Test Teams are completely different. T20s has allowed traditionally weaker Test Sides to dominate this particular format. All in all great for World Cricket. Plz Publish! Thanks!
    [[
    There is no need to tell me "plz publish". I will always publish any comment as long as the commenter respects the blogspace. It is clear that teams like Australia and South Africa have not yet found the consistent winning formulae. These two, and New Zealand somehow find it difficult to put together a run of 2/3 top-level performances.
    Ananth
    ]]

  • on April 13, 2014, 12:46 GMT

    T20 is the future of cricket without a doubt. It brings more parity ( 5 winners in 5 world cups says it all) and gives so called minnows to also cause an upset or two. Fast forward 20 to 30 years, T20 will be the dominant format if not the only serious format of the game.