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Thread: Dale Steyn vs Pakistan in the UAE - Statistically Insignificant or Major Failing?

  1. #1
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    Dale Steyn vs Pakistan in the UAE - Statistically Insignificant or Major Failing?

    I have seen some comments made recently referring to Dale Steyn's average of 45 ish in the two match series against Pakistan in the UAE in 2010 as being some sort of black mark against his name which must be considered when discussing the merits of him as a bowler, especially considering the recent performance of some English bowlers in the same location. I hesitate to say same conditions for reasons which I will state now.

    During that series Dale Steyn averaged 46.33. This has been mentioned as a failure against Pakistan/in the UAE. But is it really that or just due to some of the worst pitches (in terms of producing a competitive match, no other reason) I have seen in recent years.

    Let's consider Steyn's away career average against Pakistan first up. At first glance it seems to be a disappointing 33.33 from 3 matches (overall vs Pakistan 30.89 from 5 matches), but if you remove these two test matches that average drops to 24.66 (Yes, I know that leaves a ridiculously small sample of 2 matches, but then when my question arises because people are criticizing Steyn for a lackluster performance in a two match series I think that statistic is still valid). (Steyn has played one match against Pakistan in SA with an average of 21.75).

    Now let us considering the particular two series which have lead to me asking this question, specifically looking at the common factors in both series, i.e. the Pakistan bowlers namely, Rehman, Gul, Ajmal and Hafeez.

    Rehman averaged 48.55 against SA and 16.73 against England, Gul averaged 85.50 against SA and 22.27 against England, Ajmal 65.66 and 14.70 and Hafeez 55.50 and 16.00.

    I think (for me at least) two thing are clear from that:
    1) All the Pakistan bowlers have significantly better averages in the England series
    2) Dale Steyn averaged better than the four Pakistan bowlers who played in both series, in the SA vs Pakistan series (he did not average better than Tanvir Ahmed and Wahab Riaz, but Riaz only took two wickets)

    My conclusion at least is that the pitches in that series were a disgrace if amongst such good bowlers on both sides, not one could average under 40 (again excluding Tanvir Ahmed and Riaz), and that that series cannot be held up as a serious failing on the part of Steyn or used in any meaningful comparison of the abilities of the current SA and England attacks considering the wildly different conditions faced by the bowlers.

    My question is do others see it the same way, or do people really consider Pakistan 2010 as a black mark against Steyn's bowling record and something to be considered when discussing SA vs England as a bowling unit?

    Look forward to reading everyone's replies.

  2. #2
    U19 12th Man unam's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Draeken View Post
    I have seen some comments made recently referring to Dale Steyn's average of 45 ish in the two match series against Pakistan in the UAE in 2010 as being some sort of black mark against his name which must be considered when discussing the merits of him as a bowler, especially considering the recent performance of some English bowlers in the same location. I hesitate to say same conditions for reasons which I will state now.

    During that series Dale Steyn averaged 46.33. This has been mentioned as a failure against Pakistan/in the UAE. But is it really that or just due to some of the worst pitches (in terms of producing a competitive match, no other reason) I have seen in recent years.

    Let's consider Steyn's away career average against Pakistan first up. At first glance it seems to be a disappointing 33.33 from 3 matches (overall vs Pakistan 30.89 from 5 matches), but if you remove these two test matches that average drops to 24.66 (Yes, I know that leaves a ridiculously small sample of 2 matches, but then when my question arises because people are criticizing Steyn for a lackluster performance in a two match series I think that statistic is still valid). (Steyn has played one match against Pakistan in SA with an average of 21.75).

    Now let us considering the particular two series which have lead to me asking this question, specifically looking at the common factors in both series, i.e. the Pakistan bowlers namely, Rehman, Gul, Ajmal and Hafeez.

    Rehman averaged 48.55 against SA and 16.73 against England, Gul averaged 85.50 against SA and 22.27 against England, Ajmal 65.66 and 14.70 and Hafeez 55.50 and 16.00.

    I think (for me at least) two thing are clear from that:
    1) All the Pakistan bowlers have significantly better averages in the England series
    2) Dale Steyn averaged better than the four Pakistan bowlers who played in both series, in the SA vs Pakistan series (he did not average better than Tanvir Ahmed and Wahab Riaz, but Riaz only took two wickets)

    My conclusion at least is that the pitches in that series were a disgrace if amongst such good bowlers on both sides, not one could average under 40 (again excluding Tanvir Ahmed and Riaz), and that that series cannot be held up as a serious failing on the part of Steyn or used in any meaningful comparison of the abilities of the current SA and England attacks considering the wildly different conditions faced by the bowlers.

    My question is do others see it the same way, or do people really consider Pakistan 2010 as a black mark against Steyn's bowling record and something to be considered when discussing SA vs England as a bowling unit?

    Look forward to reading everyone's replies.
    I wouldn't bother by his performance in that series, even if the pitches were bowling friendly. I feel 2 matches is really really short sample.

  3. #3
    Cricketer Of The Year Manee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by unam View Post
    I wouldn't bother by his performance in that series, even if the pitches were bowling friendly. I feel 2 matches is really really short sample.
    Agree. Appreciate the big effort the OP went through, but it really is this simple, imo.
    The speed at which a fielding team gets through the innings is overrated.

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    Cricketer Of The Year Cabinet96's Avatar
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    He was also returning from an injury layoff. He couldn't manage to find his feet in 2 tests on the flattest pitches known to man, I wouldn't call it a big hole in his record. Will be interesting if he ever goes and bowls there again, particularly a 3 or more test series.
    Quote Originally Posted by Flem274* View Post
    This English top three are cornflakes. They're not the most exciting thing out but they're pretty effective. Then the middle order are the sugar. Would be too much on their own but added to the cornflakes they add some much needed interest

    When KP returns he will be the banana..


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    Cricketer Of The Year Agent Nationaux's Avatar
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    I agree with you completely. People always assume that pitches remain the same throughout the year, but it clearly wasn't a case in UAE. We played England in January and this was a new experience because there hadn't been any Test matches in the winters before. It was a bit chilly in the mornings which might have contributed to the swing both Pakistan and England exploited at the start of the innings.

    In addition, Steyn was coming back from injury so he wasn't in rhythm.
    Quote Originally Posted by BoyBrumby View Post
    Yeah, look, it gives me a pain deep inside my uterus to admit it, but it's Ajmal until such time as we get a working throwing law again.
    Never in a million years would I have thought Brumby to admit this!!!!!!

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    Global Moderator Fusion's Avatar
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    Nah, he's ****. If he can't perform against our AWESOME batting lineup that's the envy of the world, then he doesn't deserve the fame. Next!

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    Global Moderator Prince EWS's Avatar
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    He had a poor series, and it should count against him - it's not completely inconsequential by any stretch, and whether or not he was carrying injury is irrelevant IMO when looking over how he performed across his career. That said, anyone using it as evidence to suggest he can't bowl in those conditions is a madman IMO. As I've said before, we already have a massive problem in sample sizes when it comes to cricket given the inconsistent nature of the game, so the last thing we should be trying to do is breaking up careers into much, much smaller segments in order to create a list of checkpoints.
    ~ Cribbage

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    International Debutant Briony's Avatar
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    Maybe you should measure his performance there with the performances of other bowlers in those two tests to get some idea how flat they were.

    Perhaps all bowlers have black marks in any case. For instance Warne struggled against India home and away but especially in India.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Prince EWS View Post
    He had a poor series, and it should count against him - it's not completely inconsequential by any stretch, and whether or not he was carrying injury is irrelevant IMO when looking over how he performed across his career. That said, anyone using it as evidence to suggest he can't bowl in those conditions is a madman IMO. As I've said before, we already have a massive problem in sample sizes when it comes to cricket given the inconsistent nature of the game, so the last thing we should be trying to do is breaking up careers into much, much smaller segments in order to create a list of checkpoints.
    I guess my point is, was it really a poor series considering the averages of other bowlers in the same series?

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    Virat Kohli (c) Jono's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prince EWS View Post
    and whether or not he was carrying injury is irrelevant IMO when looking over how he performed across his career.
    What do you mean by this sentence?
    "I am very happy and it will allow me to have lot more rice."

    Eoin Morgan on being given a rice cooker for being Man of the Match in a Dhaka Premier Division game.

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    Global Moderator Prince EWS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono View Post
    What do you mean by this sentence?
    Well the fact that he may have been carrying injury is relevant in assessing how good he is at the moment, as you could say "he wasn't fully fit then, but he is now, so he's a much better bowler".

    But if we're looking across his career and analysing how he performed (as we will when he retires), the fact that he got injured and then didn't come back well from it straight away detracts from how useful he was, which means he was of less value and therefore less good than if he'd not got injured and bowled well instead. Whether he was injured or not, he still performed to the level he did, and past performance is how we judge cricketers at the end of their careers.

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    Virat Kohli (c) Jono's Avatar
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    How does Glenn McGrath's 2005 Ashes series, in particular the 3rd test, affect his career?

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    Global Moderator Prince EWS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono View Post
    How does Glenn McGrath's 2005 Ashes series, in particular the 3rd test, affect his career?
    Minimally, but still negatively. He would have been a (very slightly) better bowler in my eyes had he not got injured and instead played that match.

    We're talking really hair-splitting stuff when it comes to one game out of a really long career, but if you play **** or you miss games it costs your side, whether you're injured or not, so it effects how I rate you, just as playing a good match does.

  14. #14
    Virat Kohli (c) Jono's Avatar
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    The term "irrelevant" is then too strong. The injury plays a part in the way you rate him, its just that you don't discard the fact he was injured as a free pass to not bowling well. Rather you mark it against the player for being injured and performing worse.

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    Global Moderator Prince EWS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jono View Post
    The term "irrelevant" is then too strong. The injury plays a part in the way you rate him, its just that you don't discard the fact he was injured as a free pass to not bowling well. Rather you mark it against the player for being injured and performing worse.
    Nah, whether or not he was carrying injury in that match is irrelevant, because it doesn't matter to me. He played that game, so I'll judge him by his performance - I don't care if he was injured or not. Injury only matters to me if a player doesn't play; if he's not selected due to injury (or poor performance) then I'll mark him down for that.

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