Friday, February 02, 2007

Runs galore...

With the cricket World Cup 'round the corner, I decided to take a peek at stats. If we take a look at the maximum number of career runs scored in ODIs the top-25 looks like this.

The columns read Matches, Innings, Not Outs, Runs, Highest Score, Avg, Strike Rate, Centuries, Fifties and Catches respectively [Source: Cricinfo].
01. SR Tendulkar        378  369  36 14728  186*  44.22  85.67  41 75  113
02. Inzamam-ul-Haq 370 342 52 11591 137* 39.96 74.48 10 83 108
03. ST Jayasuriya 375 364 16 11442 189 32.87 90.40 23 61 110
04. SC Ganguly 282 273 21 10302 183 40.88 73.92 22 62 96
05. BC Lara 290 281 31 10136 169 40.54 79.46 19 62 115
06. R Dravid 306 285 36 9973 153 40.05 70.71 12 76 182
07. RT Ponting 266 260 31 9670 164 42.22 79.32 21 57 117
08. M Azharuddin 334 308 54 9378 153* 36.92 73.99 7 58 156
09. PA de Silva 308 296 30 9284 145 34.90 81.13 11 64 95
10. Saeed Anwar 247 244 19 8823 194 39.21 80.66 20 43 42
11. DL Haynes 238 237 28 8648 152* 41.37 63.09 17 57 59
12. AC Gilchrist 253 246 9 8531 172 35.99 96.29 14 48 372
13. ME Waugh 244 236 20 8500 173 39.35 76.83 18 50 108
14. MS Atapattu 264 255 31 8448 132* 37.71 67.77 11 59 70
15. JH Kallis 242 231 40 8327 139 43.59 70.37 14 57 93
16. Mohammad Yousuf 228 215 31 7608 141* 41.34 74.07 11 51 50
17. SR Waugh 325 288 58 7569 120* 32.90 75.91 3 45 111
18. SP Fleming 265 254 19 7484 134* 31.84 70.74 6 45 128
19. A Ranatunga 269 255 47 7456 131* 35.84 77.91 4 49 63
20. Javed Miandad 233 218 41 7381 119* 41.70 66.99 8 50 71
21. Saleem Malik 283 256 38 7170 102 32.88 76.41 5 47 81
22. NJ Astle 223 217 14 7090 145* 34.92 72.64 16 41 83
23. MG Bevan 232 196 67 6912 108* 53.58 74.16 6 46 69
24. G Kirsten 185 185 19 6798 188* 40.95 72.04 13 45 61
25. A Flower 213 208 16 6786 145 35.34 74.60 4 55 141
If we now prune this to only include players playing currently, we get the following list:
01. SR Tendulkar        378  369  36 14728  186*  44.22  85.67  41 75  113
02. Inzamam-ul-Haq 370 342 52 11591 137* 39.96 74.48 10 83 108
03. ST Jayasuriya 375 364 16 11442 189 32.87 90.40 23 61 110
04. SC Ganguly 282 273 21 10302 183 40.88 73.92 22 62 96
05. BC Lara 290 281 31 10136 169 40.54 79.46 19 62 115
06. R Dravid 306 285 36 9973 153 40.05 70.71 12 76 182
07. RT Ponting 266 260 31 9670 164 42.22 79.32 21 57 117
12. AC Gilchrist 253 246 9 8531 172 35.99 96.29 14 48 372
14. MS Atapattu 264 255 31 8448 132* 37.71 67.77 11 59 70
15. JH Kallis 242 231 40 8327 139 43.59 70.37 14 57 93
16. Mohammad Yousuf 228 215 31 7608 141* 41.34 74.07 11 51 50
18. SP Fleming 265 254 19 7484 134* 31.84 70.74 6 45 128


In other words, only 12 of the top-25 ODI career-run-getters
are still playing. Of these, 3 are from India!

Indeed, if we assume that Tendulkar, Dravid and Ganguly will
score an additional 500 runs in the remaining 4 games before
the World Cup, in these three players, India would account for
a total of 36,000 runs -- that is a lot of experience!

Let us assume that Dravid gets another 27 runs in the remaining
4 ODIs prior to the World Cup. Seems reasonable to me! In that
event it is likely that only 6 batsmen will go into the World Cup
with 10,000+ runs to their credit. Of these, 3 will be from India!

Yes, India does play a lot of ODIs. So, just looking at aggregates
is probably unwise.

So, let us look at number of runs and averages together.
Only 14 of
the top-50 ODI run getters of all time have an average of over 40.
Only 7 of these are still playing (8 if we include Inzamam, who
is so close ot an average of 40 that it is not funny!). Of these 8,
three are from India.
This is, of course, assuming that Dravid's
average does not drop below 40 prior to the World Cup.

What is this saying? Nothing much really apart from the fact that
the Indian top order batting has a heck of a lot of experience and
capability. All they need is the right mental make up and the
application to pile on the runs.

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