IPL stats analysis April 10, 2012

Marsh and Malinga are IPL's best

S Rajesh and Madhusudhan Ramakrishnan
A detailed analysis of batting and bowling performances across the four IPL seasons finds Shaun Marsh and Lasith Malinga on top
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Shaun Marsh and Lasith Malinga have emerged the best performers in IPL, according to an analysis conducted by ESPNcricinfo.

The analysis, which rated each and every performance in the first four editions of the tournament in a qualitative manner going beyond runs and wickets, has also placed Brendon McCullum's unbeaten 158 in the very first match of the IPL, for Kolkata Knight Riders against Royal Challengers Bangalore, as the best innings ever played in the tournament, while Anil Kumble's 5 for 5 for Royal Challengers Bangalore against Rajasthan Royals in the 2009 season has been rated the best bowling performance.

The study analysed each IPL batting and bowling performance over the first four seasons, giving each one a score, keeping in mind the different dynamics of 20-over cricket, where strike rates and economy rates often take precedence over the runs scored or wickets taken. The factors considered for batting performances were, among others, the strike rates with respect to the match scoring rates and the batting position at which the runs were scored. For bowlers, the match economy rate and the quality of wickets taken were also considered. These scores were then averaged out to give a mean batting and bowling score for each player.

Marsh, who scored 1267 runs for Kings XI Punjab in the first four seasons at a strike rate of almost 141, managed to edge past Chris Gayle - Gayle has a higher strike rate of 162, but averages 38 runs per innings compared to Marsh's 45. Marsh also scored 11 fifties in 28 innings in those four seasons, though his form has fallen so significantly that he was dropped from the Kings XI team for their second match of the ongoing IPL season.

McCullum's blitz in the tournament opener in 2008 was a stunning way to launch the IPL, but since then his performances have been below par, which is reflected in the fact that McCullum's overall batting score in the analysis is 13.04, which just about gets him into the top-20 list for batsmen.

Suresh Raina, the leading run-scorer in the first four seasons with 1813 in 60 innings, came in at seventh place, while Sachin Tendulkar, the second-highest run-getter, was a slot higher. The list of top five batsmen was dominated by Australians, with Matthew Hayden, Shane Watson and Michael Hussey filling up positions three to five.

The list of top batting performances was headed by the usual suspects, featuring innings from Virender Sehwag, Sanath Jayasuriya, Adam Gilchrist and Yusuf Pathan. Gayle's first innings is at 12th place, but he has two more within the top 35, which indicates how destructive he has been in the IPL.

Kumble's bowling performance in in Cape Town against Rajasthan Royals was stunning but, in terms of overall numbers, it's tough to argue with Malinga's contribution for Mumbai Indians. He has taken almost 1.5 wickets per match, at an economy rate of 6.33. The surprise has been Amit Mishra, the legspinner who has played for Deccan Chargers and Delhi Daredevils: in 45 matches he has taken 61 wickets at an economy rate of 6.84.

The list of top bowling performances is a mix of those in which bowlers took plenty of wickets, and others in which they conceded very few runs but didn't pick up too many wickets. For instance, Rahul Sharma's 2 for 7 in four overs for Pune Warriors against Mumbai Indians last season comes in fifth, ahead of many other spells that fetched more wickets. That's because he managed an economy rate of 1.75 in a match in which no other bowler had a rate of less than five, and he dismissed a couple of top-order batsmen as well. Ashish Nehra's 1 for 6 in four overs against Kings XI Punjab in the 2009 edition is at 18th position because of his exceptional economy rate.

The main factors that were considered

  • Match strike rate: Each batting and bowling performance was weighted against the scoring rate in that match. Thus, an 80 off 40 balls got more points if it comes in a match in which the other batsmen struggle to score quickly, compared to one in which several other batsmen make quick runs. Similarly, an economical spell gets more points in a high-scoring game.

  • Batting position: Since the 20-over game is one in which top-order batsmen get many more opportunities than even middle-order ones, the runs scored were weighted against the average scores by batsmen in those batting positions. A middle- or lower-order batsman thus gets more credit for a half-century compared to a top-order batsman.

  • Quality of wickets taken: In T20 matches, bowlers often taken lower-order wickets in a cluster towards the end of an innings. In this analysis, the lower-order wickets fetch lesser rewards for a bowler compared to a top-order wicket.

For a more detailed look at the batting analysis, click here. For the bowling, click here.

All stats are updated for the first four IPL seasons (2008-2011)

Analysis conducted by Madhusudhan Ramakrishnan and Senthilkumar

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • SasiGladi on April 13, 2012, 11:54 GMT

    Surprising Shaun marsh on top, people remember him only for his efforts in first season, we dont knw were he went after that even Punjab never had any success because of him in any other season...No doubt Malinga can be top, no mentioning about Ashwin he took many crucial wickets like Gayles wicket in knockout and in finals....Article sounds very much one sided

  • on April 12, 2012, 19:00 GMT

    MALINGA always shows his colours in Indian IPL.i like his yorker.fine.

  • jonesy2 on April 12, 2012, 5:59 GMT

    bottom line is something we already knew. australians are the best. and to think there are so many more that arent playing in the IPL

  • on April 11, 2012, 18:58 GMT

    What about a list of players with maximum Man-of-the-Match awards? That will be a good indication of good performers.

  • AdamDthecricketer on April 11, 2012, 13:11 GMT

    Everyone is taking the IPL way to seriously. We all should view it as an event in which everyone is out to enjoy cricket and to be entertained with wickets and boundries. Who cares about whose better than who when i go to a big bash game in Ausralia i go for the sixes,wickets and the electrifying atmosphere in the crowd and i dont care who has a better team on paper crickets a funny game with many suprises anything can change in a very short amount of time thats why we love twenty20 cricket.

  • on April 11, 2012, 11:30 GMT

    Majority of Shaun Marsh's runs came in the first season itself where he was in golden form and his form was one of the reasons KXIP made it into semis.

  • kurups on April 11, 2012, 10:34 GMT

    Helloo.. some one here is getting obsessed with a green top forgetting that playing spin requires more skill..lets not make cricket one-dimensional...performance on all types of wickets is the key.

  • cricket_ftw on April 11, 2012, 9:46 GMT

    Booorrringggg.... Please give us some interesting stats. IPL is not quality at all.

  • on April 11, 2012, 9:02 GMT

    Without the Pakistanis all these stats are worthless and not comparable. Due to this disgusting attitude IPL does not exist for me, can't say anything about the rest of Pakistan.

  • cricketman123 on April 11, 2012, 8:59 GMT

    Where is Malinga 5 against Delhi

  • SasiGladi on April 13, 2012, 11:54 GMT

    Surprising Shaun marsh on top, people remember him only for his efforts in first season, we dont knw were he went after that even Punjab never had any success because of him in any other season...No doubt Malinga can be top, no mentioning about Ashwin he took many crucial wickets like Gayles wicket in knockout and in finals....Article sounds very much one sided

  • on April 12, 2012, 19:00 GMT

    MALINGA always shows his colours in Indian IPL.i like his yorker.fine.

  • jonesy2 on April 12, 2012, 5:59 GMT

    bottom line is something we already knew. australians are the best. and to think there are so many more that arent playing in the IPL

  • on April 11, 2012, 18:58 GMT

    What about a list of players with maximum Man-of-the-Match awards? That will be a good indication of good performers.

  • AdamDthecricketer on April 11, 2012, 13:11 GMT

    Everyone is taking the IPL way to seriously. We all should view it as an event in which everyone is out to enjoy cricket and to be entertained with wickets and boundries. Who cares about whose better than who when i go to a big bash game in Ausralia i go for the sixes,wickets and the electrifying atmosphere in the crowd and i dont care who has a better team on paper crickets a funny game with many suprises anything can change in a very short amount of time thats why we love twenty20 cricket.

  • on April 11, 2012, 11:30 GMT

    Majority of Shaun Marsh's runs came in the first season itself where he was in golden form and his form was one of the reasons KXIP made it into semis.

  • kurups on April 11, 2012, 10:34 GMT

    Helloo.. some one here is getting obsessed with a green top forgetting that playing spin requires more skill..lets not make cricket one-dimensional...performance on all types of wickets is the key.

  • cricket_ftw on April 11, 2012, 9:46 GMT

    Booorrringggg.... Please give us some interesting stats. IPL is not quality at all.

  • on April 11, 2012, 9:02 GMT

    Without the Pakistanis all these stats are worthless and not comparable. Due to this disgusting attitude IPL does not exist for me, can't say anything about the rest of Pakistan.

  • cricketman123 on April 11, 2012, 8:59 GMT

    Where is Malinga 5 against Delhi

  • soumyas on April 11, 2012, 6:26 GMT

    yupe australians are always a impact players, where as indians especialy batsmen are more of chasing personal records and come next to australians interms of their impact in the match. regarding Gayle...his strormy innings with consistency in 2011 IPL is the best performance in a tournament...nobody is near to it. and as usual kumble was always a impactful player, even for india in overseas.in last 15 years if u take indians winning tests away, most of the time it was becuze of kumble. tendulkar's centuries weren't enough to win TESTs away.

  • straight_drive4 on April 11, 2012, 5:51 GMT

    nobody cares about IPL. give us some test match batting stats on a green top and then we will listen

  • on April 11, 2012, 4:58 GMT

    Kumble's 5/5 wasn't the Best Bowling Performace by any ways,all his 5 wickets were the last 5 wickets of RR,ie,no.7,8,9,10 & 11. & that'swhy he didn't even get a MoM award for that. Sohail Tanvir's 7 wicket haul was the best by far.

  • ManagerDhoni on April 11, 2012, 4:41 GMT

    Factors which not considered for individual performance: 1. Rating of opposition when the inning was played. You can divide in bowling or batting rating of a team. 2. Posting score or chasing score.

    Factors which not considered for aggregate performance: 1. Pitch consideration (Average score on that pitch in that season, e.g in 4th IPL: in chennai 140 is safe to defend while in Bangalore pitch 180 is not safe. How will u rate batters comparative performance now ?? e.g. Raina Vs Gayle ??

    2. Consistency in each IPLs, it weights too much on aggregate. e.g. Out of 4 IPLs Marsh was notable in only First , Gayle in 4th. Only Raina was notable in all IPLs which shows in CSK results also.

    Expecting more insight analysis next time.

  • ToTellUTheTruth on April 11, 2012, 3:38 GMT

    Seriously folks!!! Does any one really care about IPL stats? Come on...surprise me!!!!

  • kingcommentator on April 11, 2012, 2:54 GMT

    @harishk19812007 - Remember IPL 2? Hayden was the leading run scorer 572 runs at 52 with a strike rate of 145!

  • liverkewe11 on April 10, 2012, 23:57 GMT

    So Kumble produced the best ever bowling performance and didnt win man of the match???

  • ashok16 on April 10, 2012, 23:06 GMT

    The logic here doesnt flow naturally. Can you please try converting these performance as a "win share". If each win is considered 1.0, how much of the win was contributed to by a particular performance. For eg., Anil Kumble might show up as 0.6 based on how much better than average it was relative to other performances from his team.

  • on April 10, 2012, 21:06 GMT

    1st of all picking 5 wickets of any sort, that to in a T20 match is a rare thing.... That to giving only 5 runs is a great thing. Nwxt coming to the quality of wickets... Y.patan is a crusal wicket, Jedaja have earned a place in Indian team with his performance in Ipl , so it is also a gud wicket. Shane warne won a improant match with his batting in IPL 1, so u cant under estimate him. Every ine in RR can win matches on their own. so every wicket is an imp one. Finishing the tail is also very imp thing in cricket which Indian team has failed to do after kumble's retirement. But these are not noticed. there are ample situations in which games are won because of gud batting from number 8,9,10 batsmens. So people how have knowledge abt cricket should not comment like this... on kumbkes performance.

  • shamlaatu on April 10, 2012, 21:00 GMT

    Only if batsmen stop using hi back lift against him, Malinga gets proned to be smacked all over the park. Umer Akmal has shown how its done.

  • on April 10, 2012, 20:51 GMT

    what about sohail tanverr's 7 wicket haul ???? and howss dat inherior than 5 of kumble's of which 4 where tailenders??

  • on April 10, 2012, 20:01 GMT

    Madhu & Senthil u guys r either ignorant or u trying 2 b..epic 1st seasons purple cap winner Sohail Tanvir's 6/14 against Chennai is still the best bowling figures till date & mind well he dismissed sum top class batsmen dat day..wat ant last yrs ishants 5/12 against Kochi? U still think kumble's was better performance jst on the basis of runs conceded..come on guys grow up.!

  • GreenGoat on April 10, 2012, 18:16 GMT

    @rajagopalan - malinga has a "defensive" bowling action???? hahahaha, tell that to all the stumps he has removed with his yorkers.... if anything, he's one of the most aggressive bowlers and u cant classify a bowling action as "defensive"

  • on April 10, 2012, 17:48 GMT

    Malinga is easily the best ever T20 bowler and he's priceless, if he goes on the auction, teams won't have enough money to bid

  • isurufdo247 on April 10, 2012, 17:25 GMT

    malinga is a grt bowler no dought n a frndly sportsman.that is why he is been loved by millions f ppl all over da india n SL.........

  • harishk19812007 on April 10, 2012, 16:42 GMT

    use less report......mathew hayden at number three??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

  • sachin_vvsfan on April 10, 2012, 16:40 GMT

    what about local players? Sir Ravinder Jadeja, Rohit sharma, Murali Vijay and "Best pacer" Ashok dinda will all find a place

  • on April 10, 2012, 16:16 GMT

    Really? Out of Kumble's 5 wickets, 3 were tailenders and 1 allrounder in Jadeja. Also, the pitch was quite helpful and it was not really a pressure cooker match. With all due respect to the legend, I would think there are many more better bowling performances.

  • rajaviswa on April 10, 2012, 15:41 GMT

    not satisfied..... how can u decide the rankings on strike rates....??? different players have different roles to play....for example-sachin anchors the innings whereas gayle has d job of scoring at higher runrate for his team,... how can you compare both of them..... and what about consistency..???!! are these gayle,watson,hayden more consistent than sachin and raina..?? remember the more matches you play lesser becomes the chance of consistency.. in dat way how can you rate watson,hayden,gayle ahead of raina n sachin...??

  • AJ_Tiger86 on April 10, 2012, 15:22 GMT

    Please, please, please add an IPL option to StatsGuru. It will be a very welcome feature.

  • Bruisers on April 10, 2012, 14:51 GMT

    Good article... The qualitative analysis gives the correct idea of the best performers.....

  • saqo on April 10, 2012, 14:37 GMT

    RR were 47/5 after 11 overs, chasing 134, when Kumble came into the attack. Only took one quality wicket (Yusuf Pathan), whilst the other 4 were tail-enders (Ravi Jadeja wasn't all that a batsmen in 2009). So that's qualitatively the best bowling analysis in all IPL?

  • on April 10, 2012, 14:17 GMT

    Malinga cannot be the best.. slinga action is one of the worst action in bowling department... it's defensive action..!!!!!!!

  • Mary_786 on April 10, 2012, 14:07 GMT

    Marsh is not the batsman he used to be, not sure if he ever will return to his best, i hope he does.

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  • Mary_786 on April 10, 2012, 14:07 GMT

    Marsh is not the batsman he used to be, not sure if he ever will return to his best, i hope he does.

  • on April 10, 2012, 14:17 GMT

    Malinga cannot be the best.. slinga action is one of the worst action in bowling department... it's defensive action..!!!!!!!

  • saqo on April 10, 2012, 14:37 GMT

    RR were 47/5 after 11 overs, chasing 134, when Kumble came into the attack. Only took one quality wicket (Yusuf Pathan), whilst the other 4 were tail-enders (Ravi Jadeja wasn't all that a batsmen in 2009). So that's qualitatively the best bowling analysis in all IPL?

  • Bruisers on April 10, 2012, 14:51 GMT

    Good article... The qualitative analysis gives the correct idea of the best performers.....

  • AJ_Tiger86 on April 10, 2012, 15:22 GMT

    Please, please, please add an IPL option to StatsGuru. It will be a very welcome feature.

  • rajaviswa on April 10, 2012, 15:41 GMT

    not satisfied..... how can u decide the rankings on strike rates....??? different players have different roles to play....for example-sachin anchors the innings whereas gayle has d job of scoring at higher runrate for his team,... how can you compare both of them..... and what about consistency..???!! are these gayle,watson,hayden more consistent than sachin and raina..?? remember the more matches you play lesser becomes the chance of consistency.. in dat way how can you rate watson,hayden,gayle ahead of raina n sachin...??

  • on April 10, 2012, 16:16 GMT

    Really? Out of Kumble's 5 wickets, 3 were tailenders and 1 allrounder in Jadeja. Also, the pitch was quite helpful and it was not really a pressure cooker match. With all due respect to the legend, I would think there are many more better bowling performances.

  • sachin_vvsfan on April 10, 2012, 16:40 GMT

    what about local players? Sir Ravinder Jadeja, Rohit sharma, Murali Vijay and "Best pacer" Ashok dinda will all find a place

  • harishk19812007 on April 10, 2012, 16:42 GMT

    use less report......mathew hayden at number three??????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

  • isurufdo247 on April 10, 2012, 17:25 GMT

    malinga is a grt bowler no dought n a frndly sportsman.that is why he is been loved by millions f ppl all over da india n SL.........