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Team-averages. 11 times better than individual stats?

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TEAM NAME

AVERAGE AGE

BATTING AVERAGE

BOWLING AVERAGE

ECONOMY RATE

 

 

 

 

 

West Indies

25.5

24.4 (14 Players)

33.3 (11 Bowlers)

4.9 (11 Bowlers)

Sri Lanka

28.6

21.4 (14 Players)

31.8 (9 Bowlers)

4.7 (9 Bowlers)

South Africa

29.4

24.6 (14 Players)

36.1 (8 Bowlers)

4.53 (8 Bowlers)

New Zealand

28.8

24.8 (12 Players)

31.6 (8 Bowlers)

4.68 (8 Bowlers)

Australia

30.4

29.8 (14 Players)

33.5 (9 Bowlers)

4.43 (9 Bowlers)

India

26.3

27.2 (14 Players)

34.4 (9 Bowlers)

4.9 (9 Bowlers)

Pakistan

26.7

23.8 (13 Players)

32.8 (9 Bowlers)

4.6 (9 Bowlers)

England

27.2

23.5 (13 Players)

33.37 (8 Bowlers)

4.9 (8 Bowlers)

 

The above figures are based on the individual figures (batting, bowling averages and economy rates) of 14 players from each of the eight team squads, for the Champions Trophy. The average ages are based on all the 14 members of each squad, and the batting averages are around all 14 unless it is an exceptional case of a freak inflated average of a player who has played very few games, or someone who doesn’t have an average yet. In the case of bowlers, only the figures of regular bowlers (including change bowlers) has been taken into account. Of course, varying conditions in each country make these indicative, and not definitive. For example, New Zealand’s batting average would be higher if they played more in say, India.

 

Each time Sachin walks up to the crease, we tend to expect at least 44.48 from him. While he is just as likely to make 0 or 123. However if a team average is 27.2 (as India’s is this Champions Trophy) and 8 batsmen occupy the crease, the total score is likely to be closer to 217 than Sachin’s actual score may be to his own average. 

 

 So what do the averages say? Interesting things. That Australia is the oldest team at 30.4 and West Indies the youngest at 25.5. Little wonder then that the West Indian side has been looking so sprightly on the field. They are all a yard quicker than their ageing competitors. South Africa, New Zealand and Sri Lanka are getting on too. In a tough match in trying physical conditions, the extra months under the belt may just start showing up.

 

 Australia, this time creditably, tops the average of batting averages – a healthy 29.8. Great for Indian wickets that are not so bowler-friendly. This may indeed be the most decisive statistic of all. India at 27.2 come in next. Sri Lanka, England and Pakistan languish in the low 20s, probably indicating lack of depth in batting. If their top order crumbles, they are likely to be in a spot. The rest of the teams are bundled in the mid 20s. 

 

Bowling averages may not play as much of a role in this championship as the average economy rate, once again because of the wickets. All the same, the averages indicate that New Zealand is more likely to take a wicket on a given ball than any other team, while South Africa is least likely to. Australia has the most frugal attack. Very useful. India, West Indies and England are expensive at 4.9 per over. And like very often, they may find that they’ve given away 15-20 more runs than they should have. And that could make all the difference.

 

 There are some more interesting team-averages that can be drawn up. Like average no of runouts per inning. Or average number of ODIs played. Or average number of 6’s and 4’s. All these numbers could add so much to the level of expectation from a given match. And to the sense of fulfilment or let-down-ness. Incidentally, the numbers in this piece are for the whole squad. It would be more instructive to compare the averages of the playing XI on the day of the match. Commentators please take note. 

 

 So in the final reckoning – the average points to Australia. Unless their overage catches up. Let’s see.

 



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