FB Group

Share the Passion

To exchange links with me, please send mail to madhusudan (dot) gr (at) gmail.com.
Session-dashboard - Tracking Test Matches as they progress.
Tracking T20 run-chases in an innovative manner - See here.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Sri Lanka's performance from Jan-1996

I am writing this on the request of my friend Amit, who argued that Sri Lanka are the real worthy occupants of the No.2 spot on the ICC World Rankings. My contention was that they are weak while travelling while being tigers at home. What do the statistics say?

I tried a query on Cricinfo in matches that Sri Lanka have played that started after Jan-1-1996 at home. The reason why I selected 1996 was because that was the year SriLanka won the World Cup. After the win, SL have looked to be authoritative and powerful as compared to pre-1996. The stats showed that of the 84 matches played in SL soil, after Jan-1996, SL have won 66 matches - that means a victory %age of 81 - this is easily as good as the Aussies on their home soil. So, that proves the first point of my argument - SL are tigers at home.

As per the ICC ODI Rankings, the rankings are like this:
  • Australia - 136 points
  • South Africa - 119 points
  • Pakistan - 116 points
  • Sri Lanka - 113 points
  • New Zealand - 110 points
  • England - 109 points
  • India - 104 points
These are updated upto Oct-31-2005.

The 2nd part of the argument - Another query in cricinfo about matches played in all countries except Sri Lanka after 1996-01-01. The stats showed a win %age of 49. 87 of a total of 183 matches have been won by SL outside their home turf. What are the details of these?

* Against the Aussies, SL have won 5 and lost 12
* Against the English, the numbers are 6 and 11
* Against the Indians, it is 8 and 14 (and 1 No-Result)
* Against the Kiwis, they are quite equal - 8 wins and 9 losses
* Against the Paks - 7 wins and 35 losses - Disappointing!!!
* Against SA 15 wins and 9 losses - Quite good actually

So, if you take these opponents and calculate the win-loss ratio - Against the top playing countries like Australia, England, NZ, SA, Pakistan and the Indians, SL have won 49 and lost 90 - 35% of wins outside their home soil. The numbers are bad against all the other teams in the top-7, outside India. This further adds fuel to my contention that SL travel light outside and they are not worthy of their No.2 position.

What happens to the statistics of the individual players of the Sri Lankan team? Let us take some of the stars of the SL team that is touring India for the 7 ODIs (in 2005).

Let us start with the batsmen:
  • Marvan Atapattu - An average of 38 in ODIs is quite good for any batsmen in the world and Atapattu has done a decent job, one would say. He averages almost 43 at home, 39 away and 33 in netural territory. As a captain he averages almost 35 whereas he is 38 otherwise.
  • Sanath Jayasuriya - Averaging almost 32 in all ODIs, Jayasuriya has scored at a average of 36 in SL, 26 away and 34 on neutral soil.
  • Jayawardene- Averaging 31 in all ODIs, he has scored at a average of 40 in SL, 24 away and 32 on neutral soil.
  • Sangakkara - Averaging almost 35 in all ODIs, he has scored at a average of 33 in SL, 40 away and 32 on neutral soil. No wonder he figures in the ICC World XI team for ODIs. He has been really a class apart in the current SL team.
  • Dilshan - Averaging a paltry 24 in all ODIs, he has scored at a average of 20 in SL, 28 away and 24 on neutral soil. His bowling has been helping him retain his place in the team.
  • Arnold - Averaging almost 35 in all ODIs, he has scored at a average of 46 in SL, 34 away and 30 on neutral soil.
So, among the batsmen, only Sangakkara seems to be bat well away. The others seem to be struggling overseas with a difference of atleast 5-10 runs as compared to their batting at home.

Their bowlers fare this way:
  • Muralitharan - He averages 22 overall - 22 home (including neutral matches) and 23 away. No difference. In a class of his own.
  • Vaas - 26 overall. Figures seem to be very consistent both in home and away matches. 1 run more in Neutral matches. Great Bowler again...No doubts.
  • Chandana - 32 overall. 23 at home and 47 away. 38 on neutral soil. Looks like he has to show his actual potential outside SL also.
  • Maharoof - 28 overall. 27 at home. 43 away. He has played only in 27 matches for these figures to be taken seriously. But, obviously the difference is there to be seen.
  • Zoysa - 30 overall. 30 at home. 31 away. In neutral matches, he averages 29. Not much of a difference, but somehow hasnt played enough matches since his time of debut.
  • Dilahara Fernando - Showed lots of potential when he came onto the scene, but somehow hasnt lived upto his potential. Averages around 30 overall - 23 at home and 55 away. In neutral matches, has played more to his home form with an average of 22.
The bowling is also in a familiar pattern as that of the batting. Other than Vaas and Murali (and Zoysa to an extent), the bolwers average atleast 10 runs more outside SL as compared to home.

So, the individual stats mirror that of the team in terms of performance at home and away. Only when the Lankans change this and make it more uniform at Home or Away, they cannot be called as a team that is a strong contender outside SL.

Hope this has solved the query about SL's performance in a convincing manner !!!
Post a Comment