Impact Index

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  • How Impact Index works

    The system explained using the World Cup final as an example.

    Impact Index is the only statistical system in cricket that measures every performance in a match relative to the other 21 performances in the same match (as there are 22 players in each match).

    Therefore, every performance (be it in batting or bowling or even captaincy or wicketkeeping) is measured in the context of every game. This is done on a scale of 0 to 5 (up to 2 decimal points).

    For example, Dhoni’s Batting IMPACT in the World Cup final was 5.59 in a match context, with wicketkeeping and captaincy impact also measured, it went up to 7.29 but in a career context, this is brought back to 5.

    The system measures the performance in the context of the series or the tournament — and if it plays a big role (an IMPACT of 4 or more) in winning his team either, it gets further rewarded with a Series-Defining bonus (which is also a function of how the player has performed right through that series/tournament).
    This way, Impact Index accounts for crunch performances – which is really Read More »from How Impact Index works
  • Unique insights into the 9 IPL teams

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    To analyse the strengths of each IPL team this year, we take their 15 highest impact players (10 Indian players and 5 overseas) – well-represented in each function. In this case, we have taken the impact each of these players have had on all T20 matches in their career (with a slightly higher weightage to T20Is of which there are a relatively smaller sample size of matches). This is important to note – this does not factor in factors like conditions or varied opposition within the domestic circuit. It is too complicated (and perhaps misleading) to try and factor those elements in within the structure of domestic T20 cricket today.

    The bird’s-eye-view of the 9 teams looks like this at the start of the tournament. 


    1. Favourite teams for Semi-finals:
    Chennai Super Kings (Team IMPACT 2.77)
    Kolkata Knight Riders (Team IMPACT 2.42)
    Delhi Daredevils (Team IMPACT 2.40)
    Rajasthan Royals (Team IMPACT 2.37)

    2. Dark Horse: Kings Read More »from Unique insights into the 9 IPL teams
  • 11 Things You May Not Know About World Cup 2011

    Sehwag and Tendulkar were the least likely batsmen in the Indian team to take India to victory.

    Yuvraj was not the highest impact player of the 2011 World Cup.

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    Not that your life is incomplete or meaningless without knowing these facts (or our version of the truth, if you must get snotty), but some of it is actually rather interesting, if this sort of stuff intrigues you.

    By taking the scorecards of all the matches played in last year’s World Cup through Impact Index, some interesting things came up – which probably won’t enter your consciousness otherwise, especially not after a year. Maybe you’ll find a few of these interesting.

    1. Yuvraj Singh’s bowling impact in the tournament was higher than his batting impact

    India’s highest impact player in the tournament is remembered the most for his scintillating 57 in the quarter final against Australia (at absolute crunch-time), maybe even for his devastating 113 against West Indies in their last group game – all memorable batting performances. Yuvraj was actually India’s fourth-highest impact batsman in the tournament (after Tendulkar, Gambhir and Dhoni) but Read More »from 11 Things You May Not Know About World Cup 2011
  • Jacques Kallis’ unlimited talent

    Why Kallis’ place in limited overs cricket is underrated

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar


    As India and South Africa square off to play a lone T20 match, criticised for being out-of-context, it may be useful to examine the impact of the player this match is dedicated to.

    Though Jacques Kallis is widely seen as an outstanding Test match player, no-one appears to have actually examined his impact more closely in limited overs cricket. Since conventional stats (averages, century tallies etc) give a very blurred picture in these formats, his unspectacular strike-rate has given way to the notion that he is one of those grafters who is a misfit in limited-overs cricket, especially T20. After all, wasn’t he one of the players in the first IPL season for whom Dravid had famously said – we’ll show them what a Test team can do (in response to criticism that Bangalore had put together a team of Test players likely to be ineffective in this format)?


    Kallis is actually Royalty when it comes to limited overs cricket. He is the 9th-highest

    Read More »from Jacques Kallis’ unlimited talent
  • Young players redeem Kiwi loss

    South Africa in New Zealand Test Series 2012 Review

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    South Africa's Vernon Philander

    Was it conservatism or pragmatism that made Graeme Smith delay his declaration on the last day till his team was ahead by 388 runs? Whatever it was, it cost South Africa a 2-0 win in the series perhaps. In these T20 times when strange numbers adorn scoreboards every once in a while, time-honoured standards have perhaps ceased to have much meaning. And yet, it is  interesting that despite all the risk-taking that goes on in T20 cricket, no Test captain is willing to even mildly jeopardise a Test series lead at any cost.

    These are the highest impact players from the absorbing New Zealand-South Africa Test series that just concluded.


    The highest impact bowler often is the highest impact player in a Test series (perhaps demonstrating the old adage about bowlers winning Test matches) and this one has not been an exception. Vernon Philander’s 21 wickets at 16 runs apiece, given the context of his series-defining performance, registers a Read More »from Young players redeem Kiwi loss
  • Why the best team won

    Pakistan stuck together, absorbed pressure well and won the big moments. They were worthy winners.

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    Pakistan won the Asia Cup but the 3 highest impact players of the tournament included 2 Bangladeshis and 1 Indian. Pakistan played as a team, absorbed pressure very successfully and won the big moments. They were worthy winners.

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


    Shakib Al Hasan was the highest impact player in the series. He was also the second-highest impact batsman in the tournament. He had the highest Strike Rate IMPACT while absorbing considerable pressure in the tournament. He recorded three IMPACT 5 match performances in the tournament and failed only once as a bowler in the match against India (where he still contributed as a batsman though).

    He was closely followed by Tamim Iqbal (third-highest impact player in the tournament). Tamim registered the highest Chasing IMPACT for Bangladesh in the tournament, absorbed a considerable amount of pressure while batting and recorded a 0% failure rate like Shakib

    Read More »from Why the best team won
  • Familiar Bangladesh frailty resurfaces

    Man-of-the series Shakib Al Hasan here being presented with the wrong cheque

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    Pakistan 236/9; Bangladesh 234/8 (Pakistan won by 2 runs)

    The scorecard of the match is here.

    It has become legend to associate choking with post-Apartheid South African cricket teams. But perhaps the country that should be associated with it the most is Bangladesh. Not being able to overcome pressure often enough is the main reason why Bangladeshi teams have not achieved greater things in cricket. Talent they have never lacked, nor the passion to get deeper into a scrap, often not even the discipline required to organise a win. But more often than not, when things got hot in the kitchen, they slipped.

    Like on Thursday night when the match was theirs to be won. The bowlers had done a great job in restricting Pakistan to 236 (would have been even better if the last over had not yielded 19 runs). They began well too – it was 68 for no loss in the 17th over. Soon, it was 81-3 with a well-set Tamim Iqbal giving it away. Later, it was 179-4 in the 44th over –Read More »from Familiar Bangladesh frailty resurfaces
  • Team Bangladesh create history

    Asia Cup: Sri Lanka v Bangladesh 6th ODI at Mirpur; 20th March 2012

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    Sri Lanka 232; Bangladesh 212/5 (Bangladesh won by 5 wickets – D/L method)

    Bangladeshi batsman Shakib Al Hasan and Nasir Hossain react after beating SL

    The scorecard of the match is here

    “India & Sri Lanka are both pregnant. Father: Bangladesh.”

    Thus went Dhaka’s famous stand-up comic – Naveed Mahmud – though he clarified that he got the quip from someone else, no one cares tonight; Bangladeshi cricket fans are too busy having the party of their lives.

    After playing 261 ODI matches in 26 years, Bangladesh touched the biggest heights of their cricketing history on Tuesday night by reaching the final of the Asia Cup for the first time.

    They did so by playing emphatic team cricket right through the 3 matches – and despite the copious amounts of luck they have enjoyed, are on course to create even more history, if some of that luck can still hold out. Or maybe even without it.

    Here’s the last significant league match through the Impact Index prism.


    Bangladesh beat the two World Cup finalists to reach the final of this Read More »from Team Bangladesh create history
  • Kohli’s incandescence provides some oxygen

    Virat Kohli was the highest impact player in the match against Pakistan (183 off 148 balls, IMPACT 8.99).

    Asia Cup: India v Pakistan 5th ODI at Mirpur; 18th March 2012

    Pakistan 329/6; India 330/4 (India won by 6 wickets)

    The scorecard of the match is here.

    On a pitch where the bowlers felt like they were in front of a firing squad with a partisan crowd cheering their massacre on, batsmen from both sides revelled in the notion that they were invincible for a while. The team with the batsman who made that feeling last the longest ran away with the match.

    Pakistan blundered by winning the toss and batting first on two counts -  one, because setting a score on such a flat pitch is next to impossible…and two, because this Indian team’s strength is chasing.

    Virat Kohli and Gautam Gambhir are the two highest impact chasing batsmen in the history of ODI cricket…not just for India (as we had elaborated here last month). And with Raina and Dhoni in the team as finishers, only a really off day for India would have given Pakistan a chance. Not today – as India polished off the highest run chase in their

    Read More »from Kohli’s incandescence provides some oxygen
  • The price of creating history

    Raina and Dhoni camouflaged how selfishly Tendulkar actually played against Bangladesh

    Bangladesh captain Mushfiqur Rahim (3L) reacts after his team defeated India at Dhaka. (AFP/Getty Images)

    By Jaideep Varma and Jatin Thakkar

    Asia Cup: India v Bangladesh 4th ODI at Mirpur; 16th March 2012

    India 289/5; Bangladesh 293/5 (Bangladesh won by 5 wickets)

    The scorecard of the match is here.

    When this match ended, from the studios of All India Radio emanated a chirpy host’s voice, breathlessly exhorting listeners to designate their Man-of-the-Match. A little bewildered on getting a plethora of calls all at once, he tuned into the first one – where a Bihari gent promptly went on a tirade about Tendulkar’s “eating-up of so many balls” and “causing India’s defeat”.

    The host instantly switched to the next caller, a Tamil gentleman who politely enquired if the pitch had changed character when Bangladesh batted and why Tendulkar batted so slowly. He was cut short…and on came an excitable North Indian demanding to know why India is celebrating a hundred that cost India the match…he was cut short too – and the show, that normally is scheduled to go on for half-an-hour was literally wound-up in

    Read More »from The price of creating history


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