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George Binoy and Travis Basevi dig into our stats database

Misers and spendthrifts in the same team

The largest differences between the economy rates of two bowlers in an innings

Travis Basevi and George Binoy

July 14, 2010

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Mashrafe Mortaza removed Craig Kieswetter in the first over, England v Bangladesh, 3rd ODI, Edgbaston, July 12, 2010
Mashrafe Mortaza was economical against England at Edgbaston. His team-mate Shafiul Islam was exorbitant © Getty Images
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Two Bangladesh bowlers had a remarkable difference in their economy rates during the third ODI against England at Edgbaston, where the visitors suffered a 144-run defeat to lose the series 2-1. While Mashrafe Mortaza struck in the first over and eventually finished with 3 for 31 off 10, his new-ball partner Shafiul Islam conceded 11 in his first over, and 97 in nine, as England amassed 347. The difference of 7.67 in their economy rates is the fourth-highest between those of two bowlers in a one-dayer.

The largest difference between the economy rates of two team-mates in an ODI is nearly nine runs - Nathan Bracken went for 3.44 an over and Stuart Clark bled 12.42 against West Indies in Kuala Lumpur in 2006. The West Indians - Chris Gayle and Brian Lara in particular - targeted Clark, taking him for 87 in seven overs, while allowing the others reasonable economies. Offspinner Dan Cullen's 5.66 was the second worst. That match was Michael Hussey's first as captain and West Indies won by three wickets. Since then Hussey's led in three more ODIs and Australia have lost all of them, making him Australia's only winless ODI captain (not including David Hookes and Ray Bright, both of whom led in only one match).

How many times do you think Glenn McGrath was the most expensive bowler for Australia in an ODI, considering he had a career economy rate of 3.88 in 250 matches? There's no easy way to tell, but the Sydney ODI against Pakistan in 2000, when McGrath was outbowled by a debutant, was possibly his worst performance. Australia were defending 286 and McGrath had conceded 29 in his first two overs, before getting hit for five consecutive boundaries by Abdul Razzaq in his fifth. Pakistan reached 100 in the 13th over before the debutant Stuart MacGill struck with his sixth delivery. The legspinner finished with 4 for 19, the second-best figures on debut for Australia, and was Man of the Match as well, while McGrath ended with 1 for 67 in eight overs. There was a difference of 6.47 between their economy rates.

Largest difference between highest and lowest economy rates in an innings - ODIs (minimum of 42 balls bowled)
Player Econ Figures Player Econ Figures Diff Team Oppn. Date Scorecard
NW Bracken 3.44 1/31 (9.0) SR Clark 12.42 0/87 (7.0) 8.98 Aus v WI 18 Sep 2006 ODI 2417
SJ Harmison 3.10 3/31 (10.0) SI Mahmood 11.42 2/80 (7.0) 8.32 Eng v SL 20 Jun 2006 ODI 2385
Harbhajan Singh 1.40 2/14 (10.0) L Balaji 9.62 0/77 (8.0) 8.22 India v Eng 3 Sep 2004 ODI 2165
Mashrafe Mortaza 3.10 3/31 (10.0) Shafiul Islam 10.77 2/97 (9.0) 7.67 Ban v Eng 12 Jul 2010 ODI 3026
SR Tendulkar 2.80 1/28 (10.0) BKV Prasad 10.42 0/73 (7.0) 7.62 India v SL 29 Oct 2000 ODI 1652
Shahid Afridi 4.20 2/42 (10.0) Naved-ul-Hasan 11.50 2/92 (8.0) 7.30 Pak v SA 4 Feb 2007 ODI 2506
Mohammad Rafique 5.40 0/54 (10.0) Tapash Baisya 12.42 0/87 (7.0) 7.02 Ban v Eng 21 Jun 2005 ODI 2252
AY Karim 0.84 3/7 (8.2) CO Obuya 7.75 0/62 (8.0) 6.91 Kenya v Aus 15 Mar 2003 ODI 1990
Mohammad Rafique 1.40 0/14 (10.0) Mashrafe Mortaza 8.28 1/58 (7.0) 6.88 Ban v Aus 23 Apr 2006 ODI 2365
MA Suji 2.60 1/26 (10.0) JO Angara 9.42 0/66 (7.0) 6.82 Kenya v India 23 May 1999 ODI 1457
Habibul Bashar 3.10 1/31 (10.0) Khaled Mahmud 9.75 1/78 (8.0) 6.65 Ban v WI 9 Oct 1999 ODI 1511
SK Warne 2.10 2/21 (10.0) B Lee 8.75 0/70 (8.0) 6.65 Aus v Zim 21 Jan 2001 ODI 1674
RJ Hadlee 2.16 1/26 (12.0) MC Snedden 8.75 2/105 (12.0) 6.58 NZ v Eng 9 Jun 1983 ODI 197
SCG MacGill 1.90 4/19 (10.0) GD McGrath 8.37 1/67 (8.0) 6.47 Aus v Pak 19 Jan 2000 ODI 1542
SM Pollock 2.50 1/20 (8.0) PL Symcox 8.93 0/64 (7.1) 6.43 SA v NZ 20 Feb 1999 ODI 1409
MA Suji 1.70 1/17 (10.0) MO Odumbe 8.11 1/73 (9.0) 6.41 Kenya v Zim 11 Dec 2002 ODI 1915
Maninder Singh 3.00 2/30 (10.0) RMH Binny 9.37 2/75 (8.0) 6.37 India v Aus 2 Oct 1986 ODI 393
CO Obuya 5.20 0/52 (10.0) MA Suji 11.57 0/81 (7.0) 6.37 Kenya v India 24 Oct 2001 ODI 1764
GD McGrath 2.23 2/22 (9.5) B Lee 8.50 1/85 (10.0) 6.26 Aus v Pak 9 Jun 2001 ODI 1720
JDP Oram 4.25 0/34 (8.0) TG Southee 10.50 0/105 (10.0) 6.25 NZ v India 8 Mar 2009 ODI 2823

There are a couple of entries in the table above that are unusual. The first is that of Kenya's Aasif Karim taking 3 for 7 in 8.2 overs, with an economy rate of 0.84, against Australia in the 2003 World Cup. The Australians compensated for their inability to score against Karim by taking the Suji brothers, Martin and Tony, for 12 an over and Collins Obuya for 7.75.

The second unusual one is the West Indies-England ODI in the 2007 World Cup - Brian Lara's last international and Michael Vaughan's last ODI. It was only the third time Vaughan bowled a full spell in an ODI and he took 3 for 39. Vaughan was needed largely because Liam Plunkett went for 71 in seven overs. The difference between the economy rates of Vaughan and Plunkett was 6.24.

The largest difference between economy rates in a Twenty20 international - 11.83 - was in the 2010 World Twenty20 match between West Indies and England in Guyana. Ravi Rampaul came under attack from Eoin Morgan and Luke Wright and went for 52 in three overs. Darren Sammy, on the other hand, proved harder to hit and England scored at only 5.50 per over off him.

Largest difference between highest and lowest economy rates in an innings - T20Is (minimum of 18 balls bowled)
Player Econ Figures Player Econ Figures Diff Team Oppn Date Scorecard
DJG Sammy 5.50 2/22 (4.0) R Rampaul 17.33 0/52 (3.0) 11.83 WI v Eng 3 May 2010 T20I 158
CRD Fernando 4.25 2/17 (4.0) ST Jayasuriya 16.00 0/64 (4.0) 11.75 SL v Pak 17 Sep 2007 T20I 35
Syed Rasel 2.50 1/10 (4.0) Mohammad Ashraful 13.75 1/55 (4.0) 11.25 Ban v WI 13 Sep 2007 T20I 24
TM Odoyo 4.66 1/14 (3.0) LN Onyango 15.25 0/61 (4.0) 10.58 Kenya v SL 14 Sep 2007 T20I 27
TM Dilshan 2.28 0/8 (3.3) PDRL Perera 12.25 0/49 (4.0) 9.96 SL v NZ 26 Dec 2006 T20I 12
SE Bond 4.25 2/17 (4.0) IG Butler 14.00 0/42 (3.0) 9.75 NZ v Pak 12 Nov 2009 T20I 122
Shahid Afridi 3.75 1/15 (4.0) Shoaib Akhtar 13.33 0/40 (3.0) 9.58 Pak v SL 13 Oct 2008 T20I 76
S Sreesanth 3.00 2/12 (4.0) Joginder Sharma 12.33 2/37 (3.0) 9.33 India v Aus 22 Sep 2007 T20I 45
Abdur Razzak 4.50 1/18 (4.0) Farhad Reza 13.75 2/55 (4.0) 9.25 Ban v Pak 2 Sep 2007 T20I 18
AJ Hall 5.50 3/22 (4.0) M Ntini 14.66 0/44 (3.0) 9.16 SA v Aus 24 Feb 2006 T20I 6
MR Gillespie 3.47 2/11 (3.1) JDP Oram 12.50 0/50 (4.0) 9.02 NZ v SA 19 Sep 2007 T20I 39
TG Southee 5.50 2/22 (4.0) PA Hitchcock 14.33 2/43 (3.0) 8.83 NZ v Eng 7 Feb 2008 T20I 54
JM Anderson 6.25 0/25 (4.0) AD Mascarenhas 15.00 0/15 (1.0) 8.75 Eng v India 19 Sep 2007 T20I 40
JM Anderson 6.25 0/25 (4.0) SCJ Broad 15.00 0/60 (4.0) 8.75 Eng v India 19 Sep 2007 T20I 40
SJ Benn 6.25 0/25 (4.0) KA Pollard 15.00 0/45 (3.0) 8.75 WI v SL 10 Jun 2009 T20I 100
J Botha 3.75 2/15 (4.0) DW Steyn 12.50 0/50 (4.0) 8.75 SA v Eng 8 May 2010 T20I 168
DJG Sammy 3.00 0/3 (1.0) JE Taylor 11.75 1/47 (4.0) 8.75 WI v Aus 11 May 2010 T20I 174
SJ Benn 3.00 1/12 (4.0) JE Taylor 11.75 1/47 (4.0) 8.75 WI v Aus 11 May 2010 T20I 174
Umar Gul 2.00 4/8 (4.0) Sohail Tanvir 10.66 0/32 (3.0) 8.66 Pak v Aus 7 May 2009 T20I 89
M Muralitharan 3.25 1/13 (4.0) KMDN Kulasekara 11.75 1/47 (4.0) 8.50 SL v Ire 14 Jun 2009 T20I 108
WB Rankin 2.75 0/11 (4.0) DT Johnston 11.25 1/45 (4.0) 8.50 Ire v Pak 15 Jun 2009 T20I 110

The Test innings with the largest difference in economy rate between two bowlers is a recent one. Peter Siddle took 1 for 67 in 35 overs at an economy rate of 1.91 against South Africa at Newlands in 2009. Australian legspinner Bryce McGain was making his debut in that match and the South African batsmen clobbered 149 runs in his 18 overs at an economy rate of 8.27, 6.36 more than that of Siddle.

Largest difference between highest and lowest economy rates in an innings - Tests (minimum of 60 balls bowled)
Player Econ Figures Player Econ Figures Diff Team Oppn Date Scorecard
PM Siddle 1.91 1/67 (35.0) BE McGain 8.27 0/149 (18.0) 6.36 Aus v SA 19 Mar 2009 Test 1916
LR Gibbs 1.56 1/25 (16.0) SC Stayers 7.36 1/81 (11.0) 5.80 WI v India 23 Mar 1962 Test 527
GR Dilley 1.67 3/47 (28.0) RGD Willis 7.07 1/99 (14.0) 5.39 Eng v WI 10 Jul 1980 Test 882
DR Pringle 2.00 0/26 (13.0) RGD Willis 6.83 2/123 (18.0) 4.83 Eng v WI 12 Jul 1984 Test 991
CR Matthews 3.21 1/37 (11.3) AA Donald 8.00 1/96 (12.0) 4.78 SA v Eng 18 Aug 1994 Test 1266
RW McLeod 1.90 2/78 (41.0) GHS Trott 6.66 1/80 (12.0) 4.76 Aus v Eng 24 Mar 1892 Test 38
Mohammad Rafique 3.65 1/150 (41.0) Shahadat Hossain 8.41 0/101 (12.0) 4.75 Ban v Eng 26 May 2005 Test 1751
ARC Fraser 1.77 3/39 (22.0) DE Malcolm 6.50 2/65 (10.0) 4.72 Eng v India 26 Jul 1990 Test 1148
CR Miller 1.10 1/11 (10.0) JN Gillespie 5.73 5/88 (15.2) 4.63 Aus v Eng 28 Nov 1998 Test 1431
PR Adams 2.72 2/49 (18.0) L Klusener 7.33 1/88 (12.0) 4.61 SA v India 2 Jan 1997 Test 1349
AV Bedser 1.46 4/37 (19.0x8) DVP Wright 5.90 0/63 (8.0x8) 4.44 Eng v Aus 22 Dec 1950 Test 328
JE Emburey 2.29 3/62 (27.0) JG Thomas 6.73 0/101 (15.0) 4.43 Eng v WI 3 Apr 1986 Test 1044
AR Border 1.30 0/13 (10.0) MG Hughes 5.73 0/86 (15.0) 4.43 Aus v WI 3 Feb 1989 Test 1114
WE Hollies 1.76 2/30 (17.0) TE Bailey 6.09 0/67 (11.0) 4.32 Eng v NZ 13 Aug 1949 Test 317
TL Goddard 1.62 2/52 (24.0x8) EJ Barlow 5.91 1/71 (9.0x8) 4.29 SA v Aus 6 Dec 1963 Test 548
S Sreesanth 1.33 1/16 (12.0) RP Singh 5.60 1/56 (10.0) 4.26 India v Eng 27 Jul 2007 Test 1841
CS Martin 2.46 5/37 (15.0) JEC Franklin 6.69 3/87 (13.0) 4.22 NZ v SA 5 May 2006 Test 1801
A Nel 1.67 3/29 (17.2) CK Langeveldt 5.88 1/100 (17.0) 4.20 SA v Aus 16 Dec 2005 Test 1777
JH Kallis 1.30 0/13 (10.0) M Ntini 5.50 0/66 (12.0) 4.20 SA v Aus 3 Jan 2009 Test 1904
Shakib Al Hasan 2.31 2/44 (19.0) Sajidul Islam 6.50 1/91 (14.0) 4.18 Ban v NZ 12 Jan 2008 Test 1861

If there's a particular List you would like to see, email us with your comments and suggestions.

Travis Basevi is a cricket statistician and UK Senior Programmer for Cricinfo and other ESPN sports websites. George Binoy is an Assistant Editor at Cricinfo

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George Binoy Assistant Editor After a major in Economics and nine months in a financial research firm, George realised that equity, capital and the like were not for him. He decided that he wanted to be one of those lucky few who did what they love at work. Alas, his prodigious talent was never spotted and he had to reconcile himself to the fact that he would never earn his money playing cricket for his country, state or even district. He jumped at the opportunity to work for ESPNcricinfo and is now confident of mastering the art of office cricket

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