Indulge me for a bit, for this article looks at a rarely-discussed aspect of cricket statistics: average balls faced, and how crease occupation contributes to team’s success—or, in one case, failure.
At the World Cup in particular, crease occupation and saving wickets for the end overs is proving a winning strategy. Hence, it is vital for key batsmen for any team to get a start and see off the shine.
But first, here’s the criteria for this study.
- All stats are from March 1, 2015 to October 30, 2012, the day the new ODI rules for fielding restrictions, two new balls and batting Powerplay kicked in.
- This list rates batsman by how long they last at the crease, which is a function of number of balls faced. Average Balls Faced (AB) = (Total Balls Faced) / (Innings Played).
- Average Runs Scored (AR) = (AB) X (Strike Rate). So, if a batsman averages 50 balls per innings at a strike rate of 80, his AR is 40. This completely negates the value provided by not outs.
- We look at batsmen