Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Virat Kohli's Phenomenal Year

When India's series with Sri Lanka began, I heard a lot of commentary about how this was a JAMODI (Just Another Meaningless ODI) series, most interestingly from people who enjoy the 7 week mediocre tedium of the IPL in which the quality of cricket as a rule is very poor. International ODI cricket - especially a series between two teams which contested the World Cup Final in 2011 (one of these two teams has made two consecutive World Cup Finals now, in 2007 and 2011), offers a higher quality of cricket despite the ICC's constant tinkering with ODI playing conditions. Australia v England (24 matches) and India v Sri Lanka (28 matches) have been the most frequent ODI match ups over the previous three years. This is India's first bilateral series against Sri Lanka since December 2009.

Friday, July 27, 2012

The Correctness Of A Decision Depends On The Method Used To Make it: An Example From Swimming

This is fairly elementary if you do any serious research - what constitutes a correct decision is determined largely by the method of measurement/judgment/inquiry/analysis used to arrive at the decision. In Cricket this is obviously seen in DRS - where a ball-tracking system is able to return a result such as "missing by 6 mm", where as Umpires can only say whether or not it was hitting. But perhaps the best example of this came in the Beijing Olympics in the 100 metres Butterfly Final.

DRS Podcast on SL Cricket

I did a podcast on DRS with Damith Samarakoon this week. You can hear it here.

These posts will help explain some of the points here.

On the Decision Stats published by ICC:

On the shift in "benefit of doubt" because of DRS - from the batsman getting the benefit of doubt, to the decision on the field getting the benefit of the doubt:

On the difference between an Error and a Mistakes

On Marginal Decisions after DRS

Saturday, July 21, 2012

The 100 Test Men

Graeme Smith, people insist, is currently playing his 100th Test Match at The Oval. They will not disagree that he is playing his 99th for South Africa, in addition to the solitary "Test" he played for the ICC World XI in 2005. World XIs have caused much disagreement among statisticians. There are those who believe that World XI games played over 5 days should count as Tests, while others believe that they shouldn't.

Friday, July 20, 2012

On The Effect Of Their Team's Bowling Quality On Test Batsmen

A few weeks ago, I published Test Match Ratings for all Teams since 1945. The method described there takes into account the extent of victory by producing a score for each team in each Test based on the number of runs they scored, the number of wickets they took, and the "Strength" of the opposition. In this post, I apply that method to partnership level information which I have been developing over the past few months.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

England v South Africa, Series Preview

The First Test between England and South Africa began on a flat Oval wicket yesterday. England's captain Andrew Strauss fell to an LBW decision after a Review by Graeme Smith. After that, the bat made a steady recovery as the ball got older and the sun came out. Steve Davis's Not Out decision was a surprising one. There could be two reasons for his decision - he may have heard two sounds, or, he may have thought the ball was missing leg stump. It was one of the few decisions where the Player Review actually worked well, and the decision on the field, which, had it stood would have been decidedly harsh on the bowler was reversed.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

On Rosten's Ball Tracking Research And The ICC's Cricket Committee

This post could have been written at any time after the ICC published results of its annual Cricket Committee meeting on June 1, 2012. I have been waiting to get confirmation from ICC about its Cricket Committee meeting.

Since that meeting, the Chief Executives' Committee, relying "on fresh and successful testing of DRS technology", "reiterated its commitment to the Decision Review System becoming mandatory in international cricket" (as Sharda Ugra's story on Cricinfo states). This reportage was followed by two further stories - first, as story titled "Universal DRS falls at Board Table", and then a story from Australia in which the Chairman of Cricket Australia said that DRS research was not shown to the ICC's Board.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

ICC's Umpiring Decision Statistics Are Marginal

As part of my interest in DRS, I have been trying to find out what these statistics mean. I asked the ICC about the figures and report my findings in this post.

In the most recent statistics reported by the ICC, "[i]n Test matches, the increase in correct decisions was 4.27 per cent and in ODIs was 5.01 per cent producing an overall improvement of 4.49 per cent to 98.26 per cent."

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Its Not Ambition, Its Selection And Bowling Mr. Arthur

Mickey Arthur thinks Australia have been "bullied" by England in the first four matches of their 5 match series so far. Australia have already lost the series (3 defeats and 1 washout). Arthur said:
"I think our Test team is really good, it's really settled, it's got that hard edge. The Twenty20 team, we haven't really had that much time together, but the one-day team there's just that something missing," Arthur said. "I've said it all through our home summer, there's just something missing. I'm not sure what it is. Is it character, is it ambition? I'm not sure - there's just something clearly missing. I've challenged the players, I'll always be honest and I'll say it how it is. I'm really looking for a response.
"I want to see a bit of mongrel come Tuesday, I really do. I think we've been a bit submissive this whole series. We've allowed [ourselves] to be bullied, and we're better than that. I don't think we've had a presence this series. I'm talking absolute presence when batters are out there, like the presence our Test team had against India - when we walked on that field there was body language, we were strong, we were decisive, there was that presence.
"But we haven't had that presence in our one-day side. We didn't really get that presence in our one-day side through the international summer at home as well, and that's something we've been fiddling with, trying to get. We just don't seem to have the answers at the moment."
Basically, Brett Lee has been off color and Xavier Doherty is not a serious specialist spinner in ODI cricket. Other than Clint McKay, Australia don't have a settled ODI bowler, and they seem reluctant to stick with their best bowlers like England do. England's Test team and ODI team are nearly indistinguishable, much like Australia's Test and ODI sides were indistinguishable in their heyday under Waugh and Ponting.