Brendon McCullum: stats analysis February 8, 2016

New Zealand's enforcer

A look at the career of a player who pushed the boundaries in limited-overs internationals
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Brendon McCullum was a match-turner as batsman and captain in limited-overs cricket

An ODI average of 30.41 is clearly underwhelming in today's age: among the 42 batsmen who have scored at least 5000 ODI runs since 2000, only Shahid Afridi has a lower average. But the quantum of runs scored per innings said little about Brendon McCullum, the limited-overs batsman. The way he went about his batting suggested he didn't care much for numbers, and it seemed his mandate was to shock the opposition with quick runs, leaving the more meaty contributions for others like Ross Taylor, Kane Williamson and Martin Guptill. In that he succeeded more often than not, especially in the last year, when he batted mostly at the top of the order. Here are some of the key numbers from his limited-overs career.

96.37 McCullum's career strike rate in ODIs; among the 42 batsmen with 5000-plus ODI runs since 2000, only four - Afridi, Virender Sehwag, Adam Gilchrist and AB de Villiers - have higher strike rates.

Brendon McCullum's ODI career
Period Inngs Runs Ave SR 100s/ 50s
 Till Dec 2010  152  3711  28.54  88.58  2/ 18
 Jan 2011 onwards  76  2372  33.88  111.72  3/ 14
 Career  228  6083  30.41  96.37  5/ 32

2 New Zealand batsmen who have scored more ODI runs than McCullum's 6083 - Stephen Fleming (8007) and Nathan Astle (7090). In terms of matches played, McCullum's 260 is third best for New Zealand, after Daniel Vettori (291) and Fleming (279).

2140 McCullum's aggregate in T20Is, the highest by any batsman. Guptill is next with 1666 runs.

2 Hundreds for McCullum in T20Is; he is the only batsman with more than one century in the format. Fifteen other batsmen have one hundred.

154.91 McCullum's ODI strike rate since the beginning of 2015, the highest among all batsmen who played at least 15 innings during this period. De Villiers is next at 131.88, followed by Glenn Maxwell's 131.46. In 27 innings during this period, he passed 50 seven times, of which five were at strike rates of 200 or more. In the first ten overs during this period, McCullum's strike rate is 164.50 - he scored 772 runs in 469 balls, with 21 dismissals. With a 250-ball cut-off, the next best is David Warner's 107.

Best SR in first 10 overs in ODIs since Jan 2015
Batsman Inns Runs Balls Ave SR 4s 6s
 Brendon McCullum  27  772  469  36.76  164.50  106  36
 David Warner  19  442  413  49.11  107.00  59  6
 Jason Roy  16  342  337  42.75  101.33  56  2
 Soumya Sarkar  14  312  315  62.40  99.00  49  3
 Alex Hales  18  340  358  42.50  94.83  43  10
 Martin Guptill  38  851  923  56.73  92.17  103  31

12 Instances, in his ODI career, of McCullum facing 15 or more balls in an innings and scoring at a 200-plus strike rate. Only Afridi, with 15 such innings, has more. However, six of McCullum's 12 innings came since 2015: given that there have been only 31 such knocks by all batsmen during this period, McCullum's contribution is nearly 20%.

200 Sixes for McCullum in ODIs; he is one of four batsmen with 200 or more sixes in ODIs - only Afridi (351), Sanath Jayasuriya (270) and Chris Gayle (238) have hit more. McCullum's 91 sixes in T20Is is the highest; Gayle is next on 87.

McCullum is the only batsman to have scored two centuries in Twenty20 internationals © ESPNcricinfo Ltd

18 Balls off which McCullum reached his half-century in the 2015 World Cup against England in Wellington; there have been only four instances of quicker fifties in ODIs. McCullum went on to score 77 off 25 balls in that innings, which is one of only three instances in ODI history of a batsman achieving a 300-plus strike rate in an innings of 25 or more deliveries.

61 Percent of New Zealand's runs McCullum scored while he was at the crease, in ODIs since the beginning of 2015. He scored 883 runs out of the 1446 runs that New Zealand made while he was batting.

36-22 New Zealand's win-loss record in ODIs under McCullum's captaincy, a win-loss ratio of 1.636. It's the best among all captains who have led them in ten or more ODIs - the next best is Vettori's win rate of 41-33 (ratio of 1.242). McCullum was the first New Zealand captain to take them to a World Cup final, in 2015.

Top captaincy records for NZ in ODIs
Captain Mat Won Lost W/ L ratio
 Brendon McCullum  62  36  22  1.636
 Daniel Vettori  82  41  33  1.242
 Geoff Howarth  60  31  26  1.192
 John Wright  31  16  15  1.066
 Kane Williamson  19  9  9  1.000
 Martin Crowe  44  21  22  0.954
 Stephen Fleming  218  98  106  0.924

277 Total fielding dismissals made by McCullum - 242 as a wicketkeeper, and 35 as a fielder. It's sixth highest in the all-time list, and easily the highest for New Zealand - the next best for them is 141, by Adam Parore.

9 Different positions at which McCullum batted in ODIs; in fact, he is the only player to bat at nine different positions in both Tests and ODIs.

S Rajesh is stats editor of ESPNcricinfo. @rajeshstats

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • ADARSH on February 10, 2016, 19:48 GMT

    A great entertainer and personality.He is one of those person who we cant hate even if he is playing in the opposition ranks. I was eagerly waiting for him to lead Nz World t20 in India after 2015 World Cup. Is still sad that he wont play World Cup in India where he has most number of fans. Anyways best of luck Baz for your future. You have been a great entertainer, brutal batsman, energetic fielder, charismatic captain and an amazing personality. Love you.

  • Pankaj on February 10, 2016, 12:21 GMT

    One word for BAZ: LEGEND.

  • Cricinfouser on February 9, 2016, 13:45 GMT

    McCullum was an impact player and played impact innings that laid the foundation for many winning games, if there was a measure for that im sure he would feature very high

  • FawadAlam4Lyfe on February 9, 2016, 13:03 GMT

    The reason he is relatively underrated is that he never finished games, only hammered a foundation, like the semifinal vs. South Africa, where Elliot finished the job, or the group game vs. Australia, where Kane finished the job. A bit like Tendulkar, but Tendulkar didn't play like Bmac, so his stats are far greater.

  • Nitesh on February 9, 2016, 11:13 GMT

    A brief look at the above mentioned stats pretty much summarize the fact that McCullum was indeed an instant intimidation for bowlers all over the world.Finally this bowlers can breath a sigh of relief.He surely transformed ODI batting and batting in general & has had an everlasting impact on his fans (which includes me too).Thanks for the memories Baz.

  • Paddy on February 9, 2016, 10:14 GMT

    Always run out of words to endorse McCullums contribution to New Zealand cricket in all its facets

  • Garry on February 9, 2016, 8:12 GMT

    When looking at his average people seem to forget that he was a wicketkeeper for a large part of his career and he was the best wicket keeper in the world at that.

  •   Sport Barry on February 9, 2016, 7:07 GMT

    He could have been much better, still the style he played he racked up some great stats. Sad day for NZ that he has quit.

  • Cricinfouser on February 9, 2016, 6:55 GMT

    Wonderful entertainer! Lived by the sword, sometimes I enjoyed his fielding the most. I remember watching CSK bowling only to see him fielding. The way he flied near the boundary was amazing! And then the fearless batting by the pocket sized dynamo! What a player! Would seriously miss him.