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Thread: Man of the Match

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    Eternal Optimist / Cricket Web Staff Member GIMH's Avatar
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    Man of the Match

    Interesting discussion in the England-NZ thread about the MOTM award.

    The debate mainly seemed to be centred around who deserved it more, Strauss or Panesar?

    Strauss obviously scored the runs that effectively won us the match yet without Panesar would have needed to score a fair few more and, if you don't know, Monty got the award.

    I suggested before the end that Ross Taylor would still be a candidate, his innings was, IMO, the best performance of the match and should this be recognised in spite of his team's implosion in the second dig? I am not entirely sure. I mentioned when we played Pakistan at Headingley in 06, Strauss scored a vital second innings ton that set us up for the win yet I think Younis Khan ended up with MOTM for his effort in the first (I originally said Yousuf, not actually sure which one it was and cbf to look it up).

    So what I want to know is, what you people think?

    - Should the MOTM automatically come from the winning side?
    - If a bowler takes a bagful allowing a batsman to play a great innings for the win, who is more deserving? And, what if the opposite occurs, Kolkatta 2001 being the case in point (thanks Jono )?

    Thoughts?
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    Eternal Optimist / Cricket Web Staff Member GIMH's Avatar
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    Another example that comes to mind for me is Headingley 81. Would never dispute Botham's award, yet but for Willis's brilliant bowling, I dare say Both's heroics would have been all in vein. Would he have still got MOTM?

    Does the end result actually alter how great an individual performance was?

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    International Coach PhoenixFire's Avatar
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    IMO, it should be the best individual performance, nothing else. That's way Taylor should have won it.
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    Eternal Optimist / Cricket Web Staff Member GIMH's Avatar
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    Yeah, I think in theory I agree.

    Another situation, though, that makes me doubt this, is Ponting at OT in 05. He obviously deserved the award, played a great dig, but if we had got that tenth wicket...well he wouldn't have done enough and in that way failed. So would MOTM be appropriate?

    I know it's just an award but it does interest me.


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    Global Moderator nightprowler10's Avatar
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    Sachin thoroughly deserved the MOTM award in the famed Chennai Test too IIRC. In any case I agree with PF on this.

    As for your question about Punter at OT, I'd say he would've deserved it even if the Aussies lost.

    Having said that, I disagree that Monty maybe didn't deserve it as much as Taylor. NZL had a great opportunity to put a win out of England's reach but Monty made sure that couldn't happen.
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    The Wheel is Forever silentstriker's Avatar
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    Following a team that often has great individual performances but not team results, I'd say it should go to the best individual performance. However, the award is man of the match, which I take to mean the player who had the most positive impact in the outcome of the game, so I think it has to come from the winning team unless there is really no individual candidate from that team that sticks out above the rest.
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    International Coach HeathDavisSpeed's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixFire View Post
    IMO, it should be the best individual performance, nothing else. That's way Taylor should have won it.
    Agree with that in many ways, but Strauss was a worthy candidate for best individual performance; scoring nearly as many runs whilst batting 2nd/4th as opposed to Taylor who had the best of the conditions. I'd certainly have preferred Strauss or Taylor getting it than Panesar who only bowled well for one innings.
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    International Coach PhoenixFire's Avatar
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    Yeah fair point that.

    I just have an objection when people take the result into account. What would happen, for instance, if a Bangladeshi batsman hit a great 100 against Australia, but Bangladesh ended up getting trounced. In the process Ponting scored a good 100 too, and he wins man of the match because his team won.

    I would give it to the Bangladeshi player, for punching above his wieght and scoring against the best attack int he world.

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    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HeathDavisSpeed View Post
    Strauss was a worthy candidate for best individual performance; scoring nearly as many runs whilst batting 2nd/4th as opposed to Taylor who had the best of the conditions.
    Not strictly relevant, but the pitch played pretty much as well during Strauss' innings as Taylor's. Went from decent to difficult to decent again. One of those odd surfaces.
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    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixFire View Post
    I just have an objection when people take the result into account.
    Often think "man of the winning side" would be a more appropriate title TBH.

    It's a difficult question to answer, really. MOTMs are never something I like to take with any real seriousness.

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    Englishman BoyBrumby's Avatar
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    In this specific instance I'd have gone Strauss as (as I suggested in the tour thread) but for his knock I doubt Monty's six-for would've been regarded as anything other than a twitch of the England corpse. If we'd been skittled for not many the award would've probably gone to Taylor or possibly (if he'd taken 3 or more wickets second up) Vettori.

    More generally I don't think the MOTM award is something that can necessarily be reduced to an equation that can be expressed as a formula or just given to the "best" individual performance. Ultimately it's a subjective call as to whom one thinks has made the crucial contribution to the game. Obviously the best individual performance is often just that, but not always.
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    Cricket Web Staff Member stumpski's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixFire View Post
    Yeah fair point that.

    I just have an objection when people take the result into account. What would happen, for instance, if a Bangladeshi batsman hit a great 100 against Australia, but Bangladesh ended up getting trounced. In the process Ponting scored a good 100 too, and he wins man of the match because his team won.

    I would give it to the Bangladeshi player, for punching above his wieght and scoring against the best attack int he world.
    Javed Omar actually got MoM on his debut, for his performances in both innings of this Test. Maybe unique for a player whose team lost by an innings.

    I agree that it should be for the best indidual performance - but as there are generally at least two or three deserving candidates, it's not surprising that it usually goes to someone on the winning side.

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    The Wheel is Forever silentstriker's Avatar
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    Most times, if a batsman has scored a century, he gets it no matter what the bowlers did, unless they did something very very exceptional. It always annoys me tbh. For example, since the start of the century, there have been 165 6-wicket hauls in an innings by a player. In that same amount of time, there have been 791 centuries scored! (No, I didn't know there were that many either).

    If you want to say five wicket hauls - even then, there have only been 450 instances of five wicket hauls. Now, I am not suggesting that we should do it based on the rarity of the feat, and I'd be happy if it was on a case by case basis, but too many times the bowlers get ignored in favor of the batsmen, and its unfair in my opinion. And people wonder why I hate the batsmen...

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    Englishman BoyBrumby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by silentstriker View Post
    Most times, if a batsman has scored a century, he gets it no matter what the bowlers did, unless they did something very very exceptional. It always annoys me tbh. For example, since the start of the century, there have been 165 6-wicket hauls in an innings by a player. In that same amount of time, there have been 791 centuries scored! (No, I didn't know there were that many either).

    If you want to say five wicket hauls - even then, there have only been 450 instances of five wicket hauls. Now, I am not suggesting that we should do it based on the rarity of the feat, and I'd be happy if it was on a case by case basis, but too many times the bowlers get ignored in favor of the batsmen, and its unfair in my opinion. And people wonder why I hate the batsmen...
    Fair enough, but (to use a recent example) what Strauss did broke new ground. Not only did we chase the highest ever 4th innings total to win an Old Trafford test, he became the first player to score a century to win a test in the 4th innings there.

    Can't ask much more of a bloke, surely?!

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    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    MSP was the first to take a six-for resulting in a run-chase of 294 or more too.

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