Stats analysis: Shane Warne in the IPL May 20, 2011

Invaluable and inspirational

Madhusudhan Ramakrishnan
Not only was Shane Warne among the best bowlers, he was also one of the most successful and highly-regarded captains in the IPL

In addition to an exceptional Test and ODI career, Shane Warne can lay claim to having been among the most prolific wicket-takers and one of the most successful captains across the four seasons of the IPL. Right from the first season in 2007-08 when he led unfancied Rajasthan to the title, his consistent bowling performances have complemented his astute captaincy skills. Although his economy rate of 7.27 is not among the best, it is his accuracy combined with the ability to regularly pick up vital wickets that has set him apart.

With 57 wickets across the four seasons, he is only the fourth spinner and ninth bowler overall to pick up 50 or more wickets in the IPL. Warne's aggressive bowling, though, has also meant that batsmen have been able to score many boundaries. The 56 sixes conceded by him is second on the list of most sixes conceded by a bowler in the IPL. Among spinners, the 700 boundary runs conceded by Warne is second only to Piyush Chawla's 742. The table below summarises the bowling stats of top spinners across the four seasons.

Top spinners across the four seasons of the IPL
Bowler Matches Wickets Average Economy 4WI/5WI 4s/6s Boundary%
Pragyan Ojha 53 59 22.08 7.11 0/0 88/45 47.73
Piyush Chawla 54 57 23.71 7.59 1/0 100/57 54.88
Amit Mishra 44 57 20.07 6.96 0/1 69/51 50.87
Shane Warne 54 57 25.38 7.27 1/0 91/56 48.37
Harbhajan Singh 42 47 21.12 6.64 1/1 70/28 45.11
Anil Kumble 42 45 23.51 6.57 2/1 72/35 47.06
Muttiah Muralitharan 45 42 27.02 6.48 0/0 70/42 46.87

Apart from a poor 2010 season, Warne has been very consistent in the IPL. He picked up 19 wickets in 2008, his highest in a single season. His wickets though, came at an economy rate of 7.76, by far his highest in a season. In a fairly successful second season in 2009, his boundary-run percentage and dot-ball percentage improved over the corresponding numbers in the first season. The third season was his least productive and he picked up only 11 wickets at an average close to 35. His economy rate and boundary-run percentage were also high. Remarkably, in the fourth season, he has been at his best. Along with an excellent economy rate of 6.31, his boundary-run percentage and dot-ball percentage figures also improved considerably.

Shane Warne's performance in each IPL season
Season Innings Runs conceded Balls bowled Economy Wickets Average Boundary% Dot-ball%
2008 15 404 312 7.76 19 21.26 50.99 35.89
2009 13 365 300 7.30 14 26.07 47.12 37.66
2010 14 381 300 7.62 11 34.63 49.86 33.00
2011 12 297 282 6.31 13 22.84 44.44 41.84

Generally, Warne has done better in the second innings of matches. He has a better economy rate in the second innings in all seasons. His second-innings average is also better in the first three seasons when compared to the first-innings performance. His best performance has come in the first innings in 2011 where he has picked up 11 wickets at an economy rate of 6.62 and average of 19.27. His worst showing, however, was in the first innings in 10 when he picked up only three wickets at an economy rate of 8.47 and average of 59.33.

Warne's performance in the first and second innings of matches
Season Match innings Innings Economy Wickets Average 4s/6s
2008 1 9 7.94 10 27.00 12/16
2008 2 6 7.44 9 14.88 11/3
2009 1 8 7.32 6 37.83 13/9
2009 2 5 7.26 8 17.25 9/5
2010 1 6 8.47 3 59.33 13/7
2010 2 8 7.00 8 25.37 12/8
2011 1 7 6.62 11 19.27 14/7
2011 2 4 5.66 2 42.50 7/1

Warne has generally bowled in the middle overs of an innings. In the first six-over period, he has bowled only six overs and picked up one wicket at an economy rate of 9.66. In the middle overs (7-14), he has bowled more often and has been much more impressive. His 36 wickets have come at an economy of 6.71 and average just over 27. In the final six overs, he has conceded 8.54 runs per over and picked up 20 wickets at an average of 20.50.

Warne's performance across various phases of an innings
Period of innings(overs) Runs conceded Balls bowled Economy Wickets Average 4s/6s
1-6 58 36 9.66 1 58.00 7/2
7-14 983 870 6.77 36 27.30 59/31
15-20 406 288 8.45 20 20.30 25/23

Across the four seasons, quite a few batsmen have found it very difficult to handle Warne. While Suresh Raina and Robin Uthappa have scored at a fast clip, they have been dismissed three times each. Virat Kohli and S Badrinath have struggled, though: they have scored at less than four runs per over. Albie Morkel has been the best batsman against Warne, scoring 89 runs off 37 balls with eight sixes. Sachin Tendulkar, who faced Shane Warne in his last game, has been dismissed once while scoring 44 runs off 36 balls.

Batsmen v Warne (min 20 balls faced)
Batsman Runs scored Balls faced Dismissals SR 4s/6s
Suresh Raina 65 61 3 6.39 5/1
Robin Uthappa 35 23 3 9.13 5/1
Rohit Sharma 52 52 3 6.00 1/1
Virat Kohli 16 28 1 3.42 1/0
S Badrinath 14 24 1 3.50 1/0
Albie Morkel 89 37 0 14.43 6/8
Andrew Symonds 65 37 0 10.57 3/4
Yuvraj SIngh 69 40 1 10.35 2/7

Perhaps even more significant than his bowling performance has been Warne's contribution as captain. In the first season, when Rajasthan were virtually given no chance against much stronger teams, he led them to victory. The success in the first season was built on a stunning home record. Rajasthan won all seven of their home matches, including five while chasing. In the inaugural season, along with Sohail Tanvir (best bowler in IPL 2008) and Shane Watson (player of the tournament in IPL 2008), Warne was among the top five wicket takers in IPL 2008.

Overall, across the four seasons, Rajasthan's chasing record at home has been very impressive with 11 wins and two losses. Their performance has, however, suffered in recent seasons because of a poor away record. Warne's 30 wins as captain is second only to MS Dhoni's record of 34 wins. The win-loss ratio of 2.50 at home is the best among all teams.

Most successful captains in IPL
Captain Matches Wins/Losses (overall) Wins/Losses (Home) Wins/Losses(away) Wins/Losses(bat first) Wins/Losses(chasing)
MS Dhoni 56 34/22 17/7 17/15 22/15 12/7
Shane Warne 55 30/24 15/6 15/18 10/13 20/11
Sachin Tendulkar 47 28/20 12/5 16/15 18/11 10/9
Adam Gilchrist 53 25/28 9/8 16/20 14/12 11/16
Yuvraj Singh 42 21/21 8/6 13/15 7/12 14/9
Virender Sehwag 36 18/18 5/8 13/10 7/12 11/6

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