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Why do spinners have better economy rates in t20?


Hall of Fame Member
Look at the list of best economy rates in t20 internationals. Ignoring those playing for non-test playing and newer cricketing nations, there are about 12 spinners before first pacer appears. Why do you reckon that is the case? Has it something to do with which phases spinners bowl in (mostly outside powerplay and before death overs)? We don't observe this in 50 over game.

DL Vettori (NZ)2007-201434131.11748384/2019.685.7020.710
SP Narine (WI)2012-201951183.411105524/1221.256.0121.110
Rashid Khan (AFG/ICC)2015-202048183.011124895/312.626.1412.332
Imad Wasim (PAK)2015-202046163.031004455/1422.316.1521.711
S Badree (WI/World)2012-201852191.041180564/1521.076.1720.410
Harbhajan Singh (INDIA)2006-201628102.05633254/1225.326.2024.410
Ahmed Raza (UAE)2014-202041139.02874292/830.136.2828.700
RE van der Merwe (NL/SA)2009-201943149.11938544/3517.376.2816.510
Mohammad Naveed (UAE)2015-201931114.45729373/1419.706.3518.500
Saeed Ajmal (PAK)2009-201564238.221516854/1917.836.3616.840
GP Swann (ENG)2008-201239135.04859513/1316.846.3615.800
J Botha (SA)2006-201240129.01823373/1622.246.3720.900
DT Johnston (IRE)2008-20133099.05636324/2219.876.4218.510
BAW Mendis (SL)2008-201439147.35952666/814.426.4513.432
Khawar Ali (OMAN)2015-20203291.00590354/1616.856.4815.620
Samiullah Shinwari (AFG)2010-202064105.40688285/1324.576.5122.611
A Zampa (AUS)2016-202033114.21751363/1420.866.5619.000
Mohammad Hafeez (PAK)2006-202094186.121226544/1022.706.5820.610
Shahid Afridi (ICC/PAK)2006-201899361.242396984/1124.446.6322.130
Mudassar Bukhari (NL)2008-201638117.24780434/718.136.6416.330
Rohan Mustafa (UAE)2014-202043133.53890454/1819.776.6517.810
JJ Bumrah (INDIA)2016-202050179.171195593/1120.256.6618.200
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Hall of Fame Member
But that's largely true in 50 over games too. Yet we see an even mix of spin and pace among most economic bowlers for that format.
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Prince EWS

Global Moderator
Yeah I think it's mostly because of when they bowl. Even the ones who bowl in the first four overs aren't typically used at the death where the real carnage happens.


Hall of Fame Member
Meanwhile, Is Vettori the GOAT t20 bowler? The gap in ER between him and #2 is quite big.


Whatever it takes!!!
Narine bowled in the death a few times in his initial years too. I think, objectively speaking, seamers get to bowl a lot more of the low scoring overs in ODIs which helps their ER unlike in T20s, where any over can be one to target. Spinners have better ERs maybe because it is usually only 1 or 2 bowling that style and they play them out sometimes, while they cant afford the same with seamers.

Also coz I feel batsmen try the all or nothing big shot way too often against spinners in T20Is. Against seamers there is a sense of, lets at least get a single whereas against spinners, they often go for the heave and miss the ball etc. creating a dot ball.
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Hall of Fame Member
This is the sort of question we are aiming to have definitive answers to from the stats spider 2 project with ball-by-ball data.


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Rashid Khan bowls a bit at the death. Hard to prove this without proper data though.
Not sure anyone was claiming that no spinner has bowled at the death, ever. Something doesn't have to be absolute for it to be a statistically significant trend.


Hall of Fame Member
Is there no way to get ERs for overs 7th to 16th on statsguru? I couldn't get the stats.