Pietersen and Mendis take top honours

S Rajesh and Madhusudhan Ramakrishnan October 09, 2012
Kevin Pietersen's consistent run against top teams sees him emerge as the leading batsman in Twenty20 internationals
Kevin Pietersen's consistent run against top teams sees him emerge as the leading batsman in Twenty20 internationals © Getty Images

Kevin Pietersen and Ajantha Mendis are the leading batsman and bowler in Twenty20 internationals, according to a study conducted by ESPNcricinfo. The study, which also looked at each individual batting and bowling performance, rated Brendon McCullum's 123 off 58 balls against Bangladesh in the ongoing World Twenty as the best in batting, while Umar Gul's 4 for 8 against Australia was the best bowling effort.

The analyses looked at every batting and bowling performance in Twenty20 internationals, with each one getting a score. As in the IPL analysis, there's extra emphasis on the scoring rates and economy rates, given the constraints of the number of deliveries available in this format. The performances were compared against the match stats, which means batsmen were rewarded for scoring quickly in a low-scoring game, while bowlers got more points for a tidy spell in a high-scoring match than in a low-scoring one. For batting performances, the innings were compared against the average scores at each batting position - that gave a deserved push to significant innings lower down the order, given that many of them were in high-pressure situations in which quick runs were required with few balls remaining.

All stats updated till the end of the World Twenty20 2012

For more details of the analysis, click here.

Top 100 Batting Performances in Twenty20 Internationals
Player Team Opposition Runs Balls Points
BB McCullum New Zealand v Bangladesh 123 58 73.07
McCullum, coming in at No.3, hit seven sixes during his knock and became the first player to score two T20I centuries. He scored 86 of his 123 runs in boundaries and had a strike rate of 212.06. Only one other batsman managed to reach 50 in the game.
Umar Akmal Pakistan v Australia 64 31 69.19
Akmal's 64 came after Pakistan were reduced to 47 for 4. He scored his runs off just 31 balls (strike rate 206.45) and helped Pakistan win by 23 runs. Only two other batsmen crossed 30 and neither of them managed a strike rate of 140.
RE Levi South Africa v New Zealand 117 51 68.32
Levi's 117 came off 51 balls at a strike rate of 229.41. The knock set up a comfortable chase of a challenging target of 174. The second-highest score in the game was Martin Guptill's 47. The rest of the batsmen managed to score at a strike rate of 126.66.
MEK Hussey Australia v Pakistan 60 24 67.39
Hussey walked in at No.7 in the World T20 semi-final with Australia needing 87 runs in less than eight overs. In the last 16 balls, Australia, led by Hussey, scored 53 runs and won by three wickets. Considering the match situation, Hussey's strike rate of 250 was exceptional in a game where the rest of the batsmen scored at a strike rate of 137.20.
Yuvraj Singh India v England 58 16 65.70
Yuvraj's 58 was scored off just 16 balls with seven sixes including six in an over off Stuart Broad. His half-century (12 balls) is the fastest in T20 internationals. Despite the match being a high scoring one (run-rate 10.45), Yuvraj's strike rate of 365.50 was top-class. India went on to win by 18 runs.
Shahid Afridi Pakistan v Sri Lanka 52 33 62.19
The game was a very low-scoring one (run-rate 5.61). Afridi's 52 off 33 balls lifted Pakistan to 122 and they won by 23 runs after bowling Sri Lanka out for 99. Afridi's strike rate of 157.57 was almost double that of the Mohammad Hafeez and Shoaib Malik, the second and third-highest scorers for Pakistan.
CL White Australia v Sri Lanka 85 49 61.91
White came in to bat with Australia struggling at 30 for 4 and scored 85 of the 138 runs added while he was at the crease. White scored at a strike rate of 173.46 and set up Australia's comfortable 81-run win. Only one other batsman managed to score over 20. The combined strike rate of the other batsmen in the game was 94.08.
MN Samuels West Indies v Sri Lanka 78 56 61.74
Samuels' knock lifted West Indies from a near hopeless position of 32 for 2 in ten overs to a competitive score of 137. He scored 78 off 56 balls including 39 runs off just 11 balls from Lasith Malinga. In a low-scoring game where the combined strike rate of all other batsmen was just 86.36, Samuels' strike rate of 139.28 stood out.
Kamran Akmal Pakistan v Australia 64 33 61.56
In a low-scoring match (run-rate 6.30), Akmal's 64 took Pakistan to the brink of victory. But following his dismissal, Pakistan collapsed and lost by two runs. Akmal's strike rate of 193.33 was far higher than the combined strike rate of the other batsmen in the game (90.95). While only two Australian batsmen managed 30-plus scores, Akmal was the only Pakistan player to pass 25.
Yuvraj Singh India v Australia 70 30 61.55
In the semi-final of the first World T20, Yuvraj smashed 70 off just 30 balls against an excellent Australian attack enabling India to reach a score of 188 which they defended successfully. His strike rate of 233.33 was the best in a high-scoring game where the other batsmen managed a strike rate of 130.95. Yuvraj scored 70 of the 114 runs (run-rate 12.00) when he was at the crease.
TM Dilshan Sri Lanka v West Indies 96 57 61.15
Dilshan's 96 off 57 balls helped Sri Lanka post 158 in the semi-final of the 2009 World T20. They eventually won the game comfortably by 57 runs. Dilshan's strike rate of 168.42 was much higher than the corresponding figure of the remaining batsmen (92.30). While only one Sri Lankan player passed 20, not a single WI batsman other than Chris Gayle reached double figures.
SR Watson Australia v Sri Lanka 57 24 60.25
After restricting Sri Lanka to 157, Australia were well on their way to victory at 71 for 0 in the sixth over with Watson scoring 57 off 24 balls with five sixes. Ajantha Mendis' 6 for 16 sparked a collapse as Australia lost by eight runs. Watson's strike rate, (237.50) however, was excellent in a game where the other batsmen scored at a strike rate of only 106.94.
BB McCullum New Zealand v Australia 116 56 59.89
McCullum's 116 came off just 56 balls (strike rate of 207.14) and helped New Zealand set Australia a huge target of 215. The match was eventually tied and New Zealand won the super-over playoff. It was a solo effort as no other New Zealand player passed 40.
DA Warner Australia v South Africa 89 43 58.72
On his T20 debut, Warner smashed 89 off just 43 balls and helped Australia score 182. In a match Australia won by 52 runs, the rest of the batsmen scored at a strike rate of 105.07 while Warner's strike rate was 206.97. Warner hit six of the nine sixes in the game and was one of only two players to cross 25.
H Masakadza Zimbabwe v Pakistan 53 38 58.65
In a highly low scoring game (run-rate 5.56), Masakadza scored 53 off 38 balls (strike rate of 139.47). While only one other Zimbabwe batsman managed to reach double figures, the Pakistan batsmen managed a combined strike rate of just 80.86.
Top 100 Bowling Performances in Twenty20 Internationals
Player Team Opposition Wkts Runs Points
Umar Gul Pakistan Australia 4 8 72.89
Gul's spell of 4 for 8 (economy rate of 2) included wickets of Shane Watson and Marcus North and helped Pakistan restrict Australia to just 108. Pakistan won by seven wickets in a match where the average run-rate was six.
S Sreesanth India Australia 2 12 71.87
In a high-scoring encounter, Sreesanth picked up the vital wickets of Adam Gilchrist and Matthew Hayden as India managed to restrict Australia to 173 winning by 15 runs.
BAW Mendis Sri Lanka Australia 6 16 71.72
After Shane Watson had put Australia in a superb position (71 for 0 in the sixth over), Mendis turned the match around with a spell of 6 for 16. All six of his wickets were those of batsmen in the top eight. While Mendis' economy rate was 4, the match run-rate was 7.65.
Umar Gul Pakistan New Zealand 5 6 67.50
Gul came on to bowl in the middle of the innings and picked up five wickets in the middle and lower order. Pakistan bowl New Zealand out for 99 and win comfortably by seven wickets.
WD Parnell South Africa West Indies 4 13 67.09
In a high-scoring game, Parnell's spell of 4 for 13 helps South Africa beat West Indies by 20 runs. South Africa score 183 and Parnell picks up the wickets of Gayle and Pollard to restrict West Indies. The match run-rate was 8.65 while Parnell's economy rate was 3.25.
Mohammad Asif Pakistan India 4 18 63.43
Asif ripped through India's top order by picking up four of the top five batsmen including Sehwag,Gambhir and Yuvraj Singh. Pakistan restricted India to 141 but the game ended in a tie with India winning the bowl out.
KMDN Kulasekara Sri Lanka New Zealand 3 4 63.35
Kulasekara's superb spell (economy rate of 1.33) helped Sri Lanka bowl New Zealand out for just 81. He picked up the wickets of Brendon McCullum and Rob Nicol. Sri Lanka knocked the runs off easily in fewer than 16 overs.
DL Vettori New Zealand India 4 20 60.66
New Zealand were the only team to beat India in the 2007 T20 World Cup. They scored 190 and restricted India to 180 with Vettori picking up 4 for 20. Vettori's wickets included those of Gambhir and Uthappa.
J Lewis England Australia 4 24 59.98
After England score 179, Lewis picks up the wickets of Symonds, Clarke, Ponting and Martyn as Australia are bowled out for just 79.
AJ Hall South Africa Australia 3 22 58.87
In an extremely high-scoring game (match run-rate of 10), Hall bowled his four overs for just 22 runs. He also picked up three important wickets including those of Adam Gilchrist and Ricky Ponting. In comparison, no other South African bowler managed an economy rate under nine runs per over.
BAW Mendis Sri Lanka Zimbabwe 6 8 58.63
Mendis' second six-wicket haul included two wickets in his very first over. Four of his six wickets were those of top-order batsmen. Mendis' economy rate (2.00) is the lowest for a Sri Lankan bowler for a completed spell of four overs in a T20I. It was also one of only eight occasions when a bowler has managed to bowl two maiden overs in an innings.
DJG Sammy West Indies India 4 16 58.32
Sammy picked up the first four wickets to fall including those of Raina and Kohli. West Indies restricted India to 159 but could not chase it down and fell short by 16 runs. Sammy's economy rate was four while the match run-rate was over 7.5.
K Weeraratne Sri Lanka Pakistan 4 19 56.71
After Sri Lanka were restricted to 137, Weeraratne picks up the crucial wickets of Younis Khan, Misbah-ul-Haq and Shahid Afridi during Pakistan's chase but is unable to prevent Pakistan from winning a close contest by three wickets.
BAW Mendis Sri Lanka West Indies 4 12 56.68
In the final, Ajantha Mendis came on to bowl in the Powerplay and struck immediately to remove the dangerous Chris Gayle for 3. He then returned for a second spell and dismissed Dwayne Bravo, Kieron Pollard and Andre Russell.
RP Singh India South Africa 4 13 56.58
India set South Africa a target of 154. RP Singh picked up the wickets of Herschelle Gibbs and Graeme Smith and later returned to dismiss Shaun Pollock and Albie Morkel giving India victory by 37 runs.
Top 50 Batsmen Overall in Twenty20 Internationals
Player Matches Runs Avg SR Points
  KP Pietersen 36 1176 37.93 141.51 20.41
  CH Gayle 30 979 37.65 145.25 17.77
  V Kohli 16 463 38.58 129.32 16.97
  SR Watson 36 980 30.62 148.48 16.92
  BB McCullum 53 1655 36.77 135.65 15.64
  MN Samuels 22 499 27.72 130.28 15.48
  SK Raina 32 768 33.39 136.17 15.26
  Yuvraj Singh 29 667 30.31 144.68 15.18
  EJG Morgan 30 758 36.09 131.59 14.48
  DA Warner 42 1109 27.04 138.97 14.23
  MEK Hussey 38 721 37.94 136.29 14.15
  JH Kallis 25 666 35.05 119.35 13.87
  GC Smith 33 982 31.67 127.53 13.81
  DPMD Jayawardene 44 1224 32.21 133.77 13.75
  H Masakadza 22 585 26.59 116.53 13.44
Top 50 Bowlers Overall in Twenty20 Internationals
Player Matches Wkts Avg Econ SR Points
  BAW Mendis 27 55 10.76 5.74 11.2 29.54
  DL Vettori 33 37 19.45 5.61 20.7 26.10
  SW Tait 19 28 17.78 6.94 15.3 25.50
  DP Nannes 17 28 16.39 7.52 13.0 24.47
  Saeed Ajmal 48 69 15.82 6.13 15.4 23.87
  GP Swann 39 51 16.84 6.36 15.8 23.64
  DW Steyn 28 37 17.18 6.36 16.2 23.51
  SE Bond 20 25 21.72 7.00 18.6 23.51
  JE Taylor 17 23 20.56 7.88 15.6 23.35
  MG Johnson 28 36 20.11 7.14 16.8 23.01
  Mohammad Amir 18 23 19.86 7.03 16.9 22.73
  M Morkel 29 39 17.84 6.72 15.9 22.48
  NW Bracken 19 19 23.05 6.97 19.8 22.19
  Harbhajan Singh 25 22 26.04 6.36 24.5 21.94
  Abdur Razzak 23 35 17.02 6.69 15.2 21.83