Impact Index

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  • The world's best T20 player levels series

    Sri Lanka vs Pakistan T20 Series Review

    Shahid Afridi

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    The highest impact T20 Internationals player in its (limited) history (minimum 15 matches) is Shahid Afridi. A 1-1 series result in this T20 series was achieved through a quintessential all-round performance from him in the second match.

    Here is an overview of the T20 series through the Impact Index lens.


    Sohail Tanvir (for his 4 wickets at an economy of 3.4) got the Man-of-the-Series award. However, Nuwan Kulasekara (4 wickets at an economy of 3.7), despite a slightly slower Bowling IMPACT was marginally higher overall primarily because of his innings of 6 off 6 balls in the low-scoring first match where his partnership with a rampant Thisara Perera took the score from 89-7 to a match-winning 132. But fine details like these are often missed in such situations – but Kulasekara should have been the Man-of-the-Series. Both performed at a much higher level than their T20I career Bowling IMPACT - 1.36 (Kulasekara) and 1.39 (Tanvir).


    Read More »from The world's best T20 player levels series
  • India at the World T20: Our pick

    Based on IPL performances, we pick the strongest squad for the world championship in Sri Lanka.

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    In September this year, the T20 World Cup will be held in Sri Lanka. There is no T20 cricket between now and then (except a solitary match against Sri Lanka in August) that could affect the selections that can be made now, primarily based on the performances in IPL 2012. We have selected a squad of 15 based on that – but also kept their career T20 performances and T20 International performances in focus too (all taken through Impact Index).

    The numbers that come from IPL 2012 are the most important inputs here because they are an indicator of both form and ability. In a long tournament like this, flash performances are quickly identified – the source of consistent performances cannot be underestimated. And if good consistent performances are not rewarded in a tournament like the IPL, then it would appear as if reputations are all that T20 national selections are being made on. The big flaw in that is that a lot of these reputations are built in the Read More »from India at the World T20: Our pick
  • IPL5: The Top Impact Makers

    This season's seismic performances, as observed by Impact Index.

    Bisla's 89 in the final was the top Batting Impact innings of IPL5.

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    There has been an exceptional amount of criticism of the IPL this year – most of them along predictable done-to-death lines – conflict-of-interest ownership issues, bad taste around its presentation, focus on non-cricket things, short attention-span version of the sport and so on. And of course the corruption – especially from shrill-sounding politicians and journalists, smartly side-stepping the tiny point that their respective fields aren’t exactly brimming with idealism, honesty and goodwill these days. 

    They all seem to miss the point – the cricket actually was of a rather high standard this year (and it was cricket all right, and Test cricket need not be its only representative) – certainly the best there has been in any IPL season previously. A good part of this had to do with the level of competition – most of the teams were very well-matched and that led to an extra bit of effort drawn out from the players, which was palpable. Some outstandingRead More »from IPL5: The Top Impact Makers
  • IPL 2012 – a team-by-team analysis through Impact Index

    Knight Riders were a side dominated by all-rounders (who performed creditably), with a reliance on just two specialists - Gambhir with the bat and Narine with ball.

    Knight Riders had the highest impact Indian players in IPL-5.

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    During India’s tour of Australia in January this year, Gambhir and Dhoni had a public spat (or at least a disagreement) about the latter’s propensity to take a match right through till the last moments, even when it is not ostensibly required.

    Clearly, Dhoni does that in tournaments too, as does his team (built in his image) – as the high failure rate of CSK players in IPL history suggests (their position at the end of the tournament on the impact charts in previous years has been 5, 3, 2 and 2 in previous IPL seasons, in that order). They have always been a transformed entity in the playoffs – when it is most required. And this year was looking no different till more than the halfway stage of the IPL final – until … a prolonged flash of individual genius from a highly unexpected source (Bisla) took the match away.

    Interestingly, taking the performances of both CSK and KKR in the playoffs into account, CSK actually delivered a higher impact Read More »from IPL 2012 – a team-by-team analysis through Impact Index
  • Unexpected individual brilliance crowns KKR

    Erratic bowling led to CSK's downfall against an all-round Knight Riders outfit in the IPL-5 final.

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar
    Chennai Super Kings 190/3; Kolkata Knight Riders 192/5
    (Kolkata Knight Riders won by 5 wickets)
    The scorecard of the match is here.

    L Balaji was part of the CSK team when they won their first IPL in 2010 and then the Champions Trophy later that year. On Sunday, he helped KKR win their first IPL – by getting injured and not playing.

    This is by no means an indictment of Balaji the bowler, who would have been an asset for KKR in this match. But just a recognition of the sequence of events that put Manwinder Bisla in the starting XI. Brett Lee was drafted in Balaji’s place, so McCullum had to go out to maintain the foreign players’ balance – which put Bisla in as wicketkeeper.

    Despite KKR’s outstanding consistency right through the tournament, they had one problem that threatened to waylay them at some point. As a team of primarily all-rounders, and the considerable dependence they had on Gambhir with the bat, they were always likely to miss the Read More »from Unexpected individual brilliance crowns KKR
  • Only CSK can now beat CSK

    IPL 2012 Final Preview through Impact Index

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    There is no doubt that the best two teams of IPL 2012 are now in the final. The most interesting thing about this is that KKR have been steadily maintaining their supremacy while CSK have fast-tracked their way through to the same kind of supremacy in the last two matches.

    At the end of the league phase, KKR’s Team IMPACT was 1.94 while CSK’s was 1.83 (and they were much closer to the bottom than the top in team standings). But in the three playoff matches (where KKR played one, CSK two), KKR’s Team IMPACT was 2.17 whereas CSK’s has been a massive 2.49. That’s a considerable difference – and something that should disturb KKR.

    CSK are a side transformed in the playoffs – it is, after all, familiar territory for them. Not just because the matches are now on home turf but because CSK’s great success in the last 3 years has come because of raising their game (often unrecognisably, especially as a team combination) during the knockout phases. This year,

    Read More »from Only CSK can now beat CSK
  • DD loses match before it begins

    Qualifier 2: Chennai Super Kings v Delhi Daredevils, Chennai, 25th May 2012

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    Chennai Super Kings 222/5; Delhi Daredevils 136/10
    (Chennai Super Kings won by 86 runs)

    The scorecard of the match is here.

    Perhaps there is a quota on overseas brothers playing an IPL match – there is simply no other explanation for why Morne Morkel should have been left out of the 2nd qualifying match in the playoffs. The reason given – that Irfan Pathan’s injury absence necessitated a strengthening of the batting, thus a preference for Andre Russell over Morkel – was absurd. Morkel was one of the main reasons why Delhi competed in the IPL so far – their considerably weak bowling camouflaged by his outstanding performance this season - he was the Purple Cap holder after all (though the 4th highest-impact bowler in the tournament). If the intent was to win, DD’s decision-making was inexplicable.

    Before the tournament began, Impact Index had DD’s batting as the strongest and its bowling the weakest amongst all the IPL 2012 teams. The second was proved to

    Read More »from DD loses match before it begins
  • Advantage Super Kings against Daredevils

    Chennai Super Kings vs Delhi Daredevils preview - an Impact Index perspective.

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    Delhi Daredevils topped the league table but were not amongst even the four highest-ranked sides this IPL before the playoffs began (though they were the second-highest impact side amongst those who made the playoffs).

    Chennai Super Kings had an even lower impact, and they were certainly lucky to make it to the playoffs, as a combination of other results went in their favour.

    Both teams responded very differently to their first match in the playoffs. DD crumbled under pressure - their batting and bowling faltered, and the highest impact players failed - the death knell for a side that relies on individual brilliance more than any other side in this IPL. CSK started badly but clawed back brilliantly and even took the advantage through individual brilliance, after which the whole team responded with fire to take the match out.

    The story of this match is not likely to be any different. Here is the Impact Index comparison.

    DD have a higher Batting and Read More »from Advantage Super Kings against Daredevils
  • Bravo Dhoni

    Elimination Match: Chennai Super Kings v Mumbai Indians, Bangalore, 23rd May 2012.

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    Chennai Super Kings 187/5; Mumbai Indians 149/9
    (Chennai Super Kings won by 38 runs)

    The scorecard of the match is here.

    KKR would probably not be very happy. There is a very distinct possibility now of them having to try for their first title against rejuvenated defending champions, clearly fired up and perhaps very close to their best by then, in their backyard.

    It wasn’t that MI had never lost an IPL match in Bangalore before this (in 4 years). It wasn’t that CSK were 4-2 in 3 overs when the match began. Or 114-5 in the 16th over (after what had been quite a recovery). It wasn’t that their highest impact batsman was out first ball today. Or that Mumbai were 47-0 before the 5th over ended. Or that the prospect of defending anything against a strong batting line-up with bowlers who had all palpably failed in the league stages was not very inviting.

    More than anything else, it was the fact that CSK were setting a target that was their biggest obstacle –Read More »from Bravo Dhoni
  • Kallis takes Knight Riders to IPL Final

    Qualifier 1: Kolkata Knight Riders v Delhi Daredevils, Pune, 22nd May 2012

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    Kolkata Knight Riders 162/4; Delhi Daredevils 144/8
    (Kolkata Knight Riders won by 18 runs)

    The scorecard of the match is here.

    There were four main factors that were always likely determine this match – how Gambhir, Warner and Sehwag went with the bat and how Narine went with the ball (or rather how DD fared against him with the bat). KKR won every one of these battles – and that was that.

    The poor decision to give Warner out (in front of the hawkish gaze of 32 cameras, most of which caught the mistake) makes a mockery of one aspect of IPL no one cares to highlight. If IPL is an Indian domestic tournament, this tendency to import umpires for this event is inexplicable, whether they are as mediocre as Billy Doctrove or not.

    The great opportunity such a long tournament offers to domestic umpiring talent is squandered – the quintessential wannabe Indian mentality prevailing yet again (much like how curiously every single female host on Set Max has an Read More »from Kallis takes Knight Riders to IPL Final


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