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Thread: Is he 'Test Class'? Mediocre? Fast Bowling Edition

  1. #1
    The Wheel is Forever silentstriker's Avatar
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    Is he 'Test Class'? Mediocre? Fast Bowling Edition

    First, we can say with relative certainty that Mohammad Sami and Ajit Agarkar are quite possibly even bigger statistical anomalies than even Bradman.

    The question is often asked if someone is 'mediocre', or if they are even 'Test class'. I decided to look at all the fast bowlers who have played since the turn of the century, and try to figure that out.

    I took all fast bowlers who have taken thirty wickets in their careers, and plotted them on a normal distribution:




    The black dots are the actual figures of bowlers (again, 30+ wickets, Bangladesh/Zim removed).

    The average is approximately 31, and the standard deviation is 5. Basically, for you to be an 'average' bowler in this decade, you have to average around the 31 mark total.

    2SD+: Exceptional Performance
    1SD+: Great Performance
    0.5SD+: Above Average Performance
    -0.5-0.5SD: Average Performance
    -0.5- SD: Below Average Performance
    -1SD: Bad Performance
    -2SD: Terrible Performance
    -3SD: You can't win a Test
    -4SD: WTF?
    -5SD: Ajit Agarkar Standard

    For reference, by the time you get to our 'WTF?' standard, you are in the 99.997th percentile of averages. Meaning, on average, if three thousand bowlers play Test cricket, you're #3000 in averages. I can't bring myself to categorize the great Ajit Agarkar Standard.

    Note: If minimum of wickets were increased to 50, Ambrose, Cork, and a few others would not be on this list.

    If we go by the 30+ criteria:

    Exceptional Performers
    1. Ambrose
    2. Walsh
    3. McGrath



    Great Performers
    1. Bond
    2. Akhtar
    3. Ahmed
    4. Steyn
    5. Asif
    6. Clark
    7. Cork
    8. Pollock
    9. Donald


    Above Average Performers
    1. Gillespie
    2. Gough
    3. Younis
    4. Bichel
    5. Jones
    6. Sidebottom
    7. Johnson
    8. Ntini


    Average Performers
    1. Cairns
    2. Lawson
    3. Vaas
    4. Hayward
    5. Akram
    6. Caddick
    7. Hoggard
    8. Hilfenhaus
    9. Tuffey
    10. Srinath
    11. Lee
    12. Colleymore
    13. Siddle
    14. King
    15. Kaprowicz
    16. Harmison
    17. Nel
    18. Cuffy
    19. Sreesanth
    20. Kallis
    21. Morkel
    22. Pathan
    23. Flintoff
    24. Franklin
    25. Khan
    26. Mills
    27. Oram
    28. Dillon
    29. O'Brien
    30. Martin
    31. Collins
    32. Malinga


    Below Average Performers
    1. Sharma
    2. Gul
    3. Anderson
    4. Zoysa
    5. Fernando
    6. Broad
    7. Taylor
    8. Hall
    9. Patel


    Bad Performers
    1. Razzaq
    2. Bravo
    3. Singh
    4. Edwards
    5. Nehra
    6. Drakes



    Terrible Performers
    1. Sanford


    How do you win a Test?
    1. Powell



    WTF?
    1. Sami


    Ajit Agarkar
    1. Agarkar



    Now, what about for a specific country? You may be wondering what the 'average' performance would be for a pace bowler playing in India? Using the methodology that you must have taken at least eight wickets, we can come up with an idea. Now, the standard deviation here is much higher (but the sample is much smaller), so I'm still going to use the 5 point marks to differentiate the bowlers. An average fast bowler should average around 36 in India (so the "average" fast bowler averages 31 overall and 36 in India).

    But for India, we have bowlers who average 15points lower than the average pace bowler in India (e.g, average less than 21!) For that, we have to introduce a new 'Can I borrow your genes?' category.

    Can I borrow your genes:
    1. Steyn
    2. McGrath


    Exceptional
    1. Gillespie
    2. Hoggard
    3. Dillon


    Great
    1. Pollock
    2. Ntini
    3. Anderson
    4. Sharma
    5. Flintoff
    6. Srinath


    Above Average
    1. Watson
    2. Akhtar
    3. Patel


    Average
    1. Sreesanth
    2. Khan
    3. Morkel


    Below Average
    1. Kasprowicz
    2. Johnson


    Bad
    1. Balaji


    Terrible
    1. Streak


    WTF?
    1. Pathan


    Ajit Agarkar
    None

    Unfortunately, we're not done yet. We have to introduce categories even below Ajit Agarkar, and failure this bad has no word for it in the English language.

    ........
    1. Lee
    2. Agarkar
    3. Sami (14 wickets with almost 1000 runs conceded...average of close to 70!)
    Last edited by silentstriker; 12-02-2010 at 06:01 PM.
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  2. #2
    Eyes not spreadsheets marc71178's Avatar
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    Hmm, any rating that has Cork as great is wrong.
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  3. #3
    The Wheel is Forever silentstriker's Avatar
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    36 wickets, he would not be here if the wicket criteria was 50. He had one great series where he took 20 wickets @ 12.25, which pushes him high. The others were terrible, and he was dropped four series later.
    Last edited by silentstriker; 12-02-2010 at 06:05 PM.

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    Cricket Web: All-Time Legend Top_Cat's Avatar
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    Questionable assumption of normality.
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    State Regular L Trumper's Avatar
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    Good analysis.
    Try the same for strikerates also. Clubbing them together might give better idea about bowlers (Statstically).

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    World Traveller Craig's Avatar
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    Beware the lollipop of mediocrity. Lick once and you suck forever...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Boobidy View Post
    Bradman never had to face quicks like Sharma and Irfan Pathan. He wouldn't of lasted a ball against those 2, not to mention a spinner like Sehwag.

  7. #7
    The Wheel is Forever silentstriker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Top_Cat View Post
    Questionable assumption of normality.
    Shh... Everything is normal. It must be.

    It's like in Physical Chem, everything must have y=mx+b applied to it. No matter what.
    Last edited by silentstriker; 12-02-2010 at 09:56 PM.

  8. #8
    The Wheel is Forever silentstriker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by L Trumper View Post
    Good analysis.
    Try the same for strikerates also. Clubbing them together might give better idea about bowlers (Statstically).
    I don't necessarily think it would really change anything here.

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    State Regular AaronK's Avatar
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    How did wasim akram end up as an average performer?

    The greatest bowler i have seen..as good as McGrath, Ambrose, Walsh, and even Marshal..

  10. #10
    The Wheel is Forever silentstriker's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by AaronK View Post
    How did wasim akram end up as an average performer?

    The greatest bowler i have seen..as good as McGrath, Ambrose, Walsh, and even Marshal..
    It's from 2000 onwards. He only played 13 Tests after 2000, and took only 31 wickets at an average of 30 in his last two years.

  11. #11
    International Regular bryce's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by silentstriker View Post
    Exceptional
    1. Dillon


    Great
    1. Pollock
    2. Ntini
    3. Anderson
    4. Sharma
    5. Flintoff
    6. Srinath
    Enjoyed reading that part tbh. Yeah i guess the wicket criteria should have been 50
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    10.Southee
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  12. #12
    School Boy/Girl Cricketer Dano.85's Avatar
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    Well done that must have taken ages to do. But i think i will stick to my eyes and my opinion who i think is good or not, while i honestly think what you have done is good great bowlers have so much more then good stats, they are larger then life, they are leaders, they dont follow a plan they make it, it might not all ways go right thus a few bad games/series stats wise. But no maths, graph or statistical analysis take that into account.

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    How can Mervyn Dillion make a list of bowlers as exceptional and Jimmy Anderson great, just shows how limited a stastically analysis is?

  14. #14
    International Coach morgieb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shortofalength View Post
    How can Mervyn Dillion make a list of bowlers as exceptional and Jimmy Anderson great, just shows how limited a stastically analysis is?
    Dillon & Anderson are 'great' and 'exceptional' because they got good records in India, ITBT. Aren't that good elsewhere.
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    Cricket Web Staff Member Richard's Avatar
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    This'd be so much more interesting if you started in September 2001 rather than January 2000.
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