I am one of those who believes that averages in the limited overs game for batsmen, can and do depend quite a bit on the batting order because of the limited number of overs left for later order batsmen in which to lose their wicket. Of course, it applies only to good batsmen batting lower down and not to rabbits.
Originally Posted by 8ankitj
The basic premise being that the openers have 50 overs left in which to get out while a number six may have something like 20 or so.
I decided to check Dhoni's figures for those innings when he came in to bat in the first 25 overs of an odi innings. Since the data is not available for this I had to go through all his carreer innings list and see the over in which he came in to bat. To save time, I took only the innings since 1st Jan 2010 till date - a period of just over three years.
I 33 such innings where he came into bat before the 35th over was completed. Of these there were three innings where, although he went in early, there were only a handful of overs left for India to play since they were chasing a small total. I removed these three innings since this was not the kind of situation I was looking at. Here is what I found.
Innings : 30
Not outs : 4
Runs : 1103
Balls faced : 1524
Avg : 42.4
St Rt : 72
100's : 2
50's : 6
India lost 60 % (18) of these games.
If you take away the minnows (Bangladesh and Ireland) the average comes down to 39 and the strike rate to 70
The loss percentage goes up to 67 % (18 out of 27)
When he comes into bat after the 25th over his average is above 78 and the strike rate about 105.
But we know Dhoni usually bats at 6 (give or take)* so in general, the earlier he comes into bat, the worse the top order have done. The worse the top order have done, the more likely it's a difficult day to bat, either because of how well the opposition or bowling or because of conditions, or both. So it's only to be expected that it'll be harder for him to score, and his team are likely to lose.
*Turns out since 2010 it's 35 innings at no.6, 15 at no.5, and a handful at 4 or 7.
The point is not of difficulty but of the number of not outs which give exaggerated batting averages to the good batsman who bats later in the odi format. Even a rabbit will have some not outs at number 11 but none at the top of the order. The better batsman will always have more. That is why the not counting of not outs has always been a bit of a dicey proposition but nothing better has not been proposed which is also simple at the same time. So while one cant do anything about the way the averages are calculated today with respect to not outs, one should at least keep in mind the effect they have on averages and not assume that a batsman who averages in the 50's at number 6 or 7 is automatically a better batsman than one who averages ten points or so lower at the top.
Originally Posted by Howe_zat
By the way, if the argument for lower averages for coming in to bat in the first 25 overs is going to be just that the top order did no do well therefore the conditions were tough, then it can also be said that the higher averages when coming in to bat in the second half are because the top order has softened up the attack.
If a batsman's average of 50 plus is going to make us call him the best or even one of the best ever in the format, we should not use the excuse of failure of the top order as in this case.
Let me clarify, nevertheless, that I am not writing this because I have anything but the highest regard for Dhoni's achievements in the shorter format of the game and his assessment of and controlling of a run chase to a nicety. I just want to add to what has been said by Neil and others about putting stats in perspective.
PS : By the way, he does not come into bat in the first 25 overs just once in a while. For the period I have taken (1-1-2010 till date) his coming in before and after the 25th over is exactly the same in number of innings - 30 each !! So if half his innings are when he comes in before the 25th over and half after, we cant just ignore one half.
I'm not trying to big up Dhoni, and I entirely agree with the bolded part.
Originally Posted by SJS
I'm just saying that I think a no.6 coming in in the 20th over isn't really going to give you a fair depiction of them being a no.3, it's entirely its own situation. The only real evidence we have of Dhoni being a top-order bat are the innings he's played in the top order, which aren't that exhaustive but to be fair to him it seems he's done well.
As for the general point, I think it's pretty hard to say which role is going to be better for the average. Sure there are more deliveries to negotiate from the top order but there are also more deliveries to play yourself in with. How often have we heard about batsman playing "selflessly" and gifting wickets away at the end of an innings? Nobody's going to moan about Jos Buttler's average of 14 from this series, we all know why he got out on 14 and we think he did pretty well. Conversely "playing for the average" is usually associated with playing more deliveries than you ought to be doing, isn't it?
I get the impression that batting lower down is just a differing role in which an average seems to matter a bit less, like comparing your spinner to your strike bowler.
One thing I've been thinking about - and I'm certainly going into conjecture here - is that a T20 innings seems to be a lot like the final 20 overs of an ODI, or at least the final 20 overs if you were given all 10 wickets. After all I'm sure that in any modern matches where there are no wickets down at the 30 over mark, 150 or so is the expected addition. If having to face less deliveries to get that not out boosted the average, why do we see that batsmen consistently have lower averages in T20 then they do in ODIs? Most players struggle to average over 30 in the format with a decent strike rate.
The ODI series was such a weird one. The players who ended up doing well for India except Dhoni and Raina were ones that you thought were on the verge of being dropped and wanted dropped.
Got to hope that the likes of Jadeja, Ishant, Rohit and Out of form Gambhir who probably just about saved his place manage to get better and carry this through in the Champions trophy.
The 2 bowlers ofcourse were good finds.
I never ever suggested that Dhoni plays for the average. He doesn't. Nor did Bevan. That is not what is implied when I bring up the not outs point. In fact, Dhoni is one of the greatest team players India has EVER produced.
Originally Posted by Howe_zat
What Dhoni has done, and Bevan before him, is to understand the limited overs game much better than most cricketers. They realise that it is NOT all slam bam stuff that is required in this format. That is what Dhoni was doing in the early part of his career. But the bright guy that he is, he quickly realised that it was much better to play a smart game with the end result in mind than just playing to the galleries. It would have been easy for him to do the latter. No one expected anything different from him but he changed it on his own and put it even more emphatically in practice when he took over the captaincy with no one to 'order' him when to go hammer and tongs.
With the result his strike started dropping even as his average started picking up. He did not bother about the murmurs that were heard, including amongst some fans, about the new Dhoni. In fact, the helicopter shot was almost shelved completely till he suddenly brought it out in the current series in a modified version where he used it to hit boundaries rather than hit for sixes.
Dhoni, like Bevan, has understood that a very good run rate can be obtained by a pair of very good runners between the wickets who did not take undue risks in the middle overs when run rates drop and efforts to boost them can result in a fall of wickets which reduces the capacity to score at an express pace in the last few overs.
That is why with someone like Raina, for example, and even Sachin Tendulkar on the few occasions they have batted for a long period together, he has shown how very quick runs can be scored while preserving wickets. Bevan did the same. These are very smart cricketers. This is why he is different from Afridi who, talent wise is superior to Dhoni but has cow-dung between his ears.
A cricketer who can run quickly between wickets, keep rotating the strike, maintain a very decent strike rate even if a tad bit lower than the nail-biting edge-of-the-chair fan expects keeps the team very much in the run for he trusts his ability to score at an express rate towards the end. However, if wickets fall, even the best of strikers, Afridi, Razzaq, Kluesner et al, may not be able to score at 10-12 runs per over in the last 5-8 overs if the rabbits are at the other end. After all even the best of batsmen need just one good ball or one error of judgement to lose their wicket.
Dhoni also knows, to an incredibly fine degree of perfection, when to switch gears. This perhaps, is his greatest attribute. Of course, he will fail at times and fall before he has moved to top gear and the team's cause may suffer since he consumed far too many deliveries batting in the lower gear but he thinks, and rightly as we have seen, that the percentage of this happening is low enough to make the tactic more than worthwhile. is the big hotting. Bevan is not in the same category as Dhoni in this so we find Bevan maintained a relatively more even rate of scoring in the initial and latter stages of his innings - of course scoring faster in the latter part. Dhoni's two gears are pretty far apart which is what leads to cynicism amongst some. I was among those once but it became clear soon enough that this man knew exactly what he was doing.
Mind you Dhoni has limitations, severe limitations, in batting technique. This comes from virtually no formal coaching whatsoever. But how he has overcome it is a marvel, I do not recommend any one to copy Dhoni's technique but that does not mean one can't look at him and admire what he does with the complete bottom hand and wrist dominated batting with hardly any backlift and not much follow through as well !!
So Dhoni is a gem but we need to understand his batting and admire him even when comparing him with others and not use his average to do so.
By the way, the 42,2 that he averages when he comes in to bat in or before the 25th over is not given by me to show him in poor light. Most top order batsmen in the world would give away anything to average that. So no one needs to be defensive about his average batting early. I was only trying to show how averages can vary when a good batsman comes in with fewer overs left.
So he is a gem. I do not deny that. But he is not the greatest one day batsman, nor was Bevan and averages are not the way to decide where to place Sir Vivian Richards in that very short list :)
Who genuinely wanted Jadeja dropped?
Originally Posted by Cevno
He's been gun the last six months or so.
He hasn't played ODI's since march before the Pakistan series ?
Originally Posted by Pup Clarke
I personally only wanted him to play as a specialist bowler, or not at all in ODI's. Yuvraj's bowling record for a while was as good as him, and the win percentage with him in the team was near half than that of without him in the team.
Fair enough, he seems to have upped his game now but still have doubts about him in England during the CT. Last time he was piss both in England and in Australia.
India's win %ge when Dhoni is unbeaten in a chase is astonishing.
That isn't astonishing at all really. The vast majority of the time, any decent batsman is going to get their side over the line or get out trying. When you take a not out as a given, the win percentage isn't much of a measure of how often they won the match because you aren't counting the vast majority of fails (i.e. when they get out).
For example the win percentage for India when Rohit Sharma is not out in a chase is 100%.
Yup, agree with Howe_zat. Cause and effect reversed in that argument.
haha......good example to make a point
Originally Posted by Howe_zat