By Soham Sarkhel and Jatin Thakkar
[For series scorecards, click here]
The New Zealand team of late have hit a downward spiral and their hopes of changing the same received a huge knock-back after West Indies completely battered them to take the 5 match ODI series, 4-1. To be fair, the Kiwis had their chances during the series and even produced some moments of individual brilliance but eventually they all fizzled out against a dominant West Indian performance.
Here is an overview of the series through the Impact Index lens.
The overall dominance of West Indies in the series can be very clearly understood from the fact that 7 out of the 10 highest impact players in this series belonged to them. Conversely, 7 out of the 10 lowest impact players in the series belonged to New Zealand which really explains the one-sided affair on display during the ODI series.
Interestingly, BJ Watling (4.23) emerges as the highest impact player of the series. Even though he could play only 3 matches in the series before getting injured, he gave assured performances for his team (0% failure rate) when the rest were severely underperforming.
In the three matches he played, Watling’s performances read - 60 off 98 balls (coming in at 48-4), 72 not out off 62 balls (chasing 316 and coming in at 125-4) and 40 off 47 balls (coming in at 124-4). The above performances also quite clearly demonstrate Watling’s ability to absorb pressure (Pressure IMPACT) while maintaining a healthy scoring rate (Strike Rate IMPACT). He was also New Zealand’s highest impact batsman in the series and the second overall (after Andre Russell). He is one player to watch out for in the near future.
Even though Sunil Narine (3.79) was declared as the player of the series, he was actually the 2nd highest impact player after BJ Watling in this series. Besides taking the highest number of wickets in the series, Narine also had the highest Economy and Pressure Building IMPACT in the series. His performance in the 5th ODI where he picked up 5 for 27 in his 10 overs was also the highest impact bowling performance in the entire series.
Interestingly, Andre Russell (3.32) emerges as the highest impact batsman of the series even though he comes 6th on the list of the highest run-getters. His high Batting IMPACT is primarily due to his high Strike Rate IMPACT (almost twice than the next batsman on the list) and Pressure IMPACT. His highest impact batting performance came in the 5th ODI where his unbeaten knock of 59 runs off 40 balls shepherded West Indies from a precarious position of 160-7 to a match-winning total of 241-9. He was also one of the only three players (MN Samuels and AM Ellis are the others) to register an all-round impact (both Bowling and Batting IMPACT over 1) in the series.
Both, Chris Gayle (2.48) and Marlon Samuels (3.36) played a huge role in the outcome of this series and more often than not gave the West Indians a stable platform to build on. In fact, the highest impact batting performance of the series came from Gayle in the 1st ODI where he scored an unbeaten 63 off 57 balls to chase down a modest target of 136. Samuels on the other hand, delivered the highest impact match performance of the series in the 2nd ODI where he followed up his unbeaten knock of 101 off 103 balls by taking 2-46 off his 8 overs.
Tino Best (3.59) maintained his impressive return to the team and was the 2nd highest impact bowler in the series for West Indies primarily because he played only two matches and performed in both. He also registered the second highest impact bowling performance of the series in the 4th ODI where he picked up 4-46 off 10 overs to seal the series in West Indies’ favour.
Tim Southee (3.28) was the highest impact bowler for New Zealand and also registered the highest impact bowling performance of the series for the New Zealanders in the 5th ODI where he picked up 3-37 off 10 overs to reduce West Indies to 97-4. Southee displayed the relevant bowling skills—he was economical and he built pressure while bowling in the series and had a failure rate of only 20%.
Even though Ross Taylor (3.17) played in only two matches (he missed out due to injury) in the series, he still managed to deliver the highest impact batting performance of the series for the New Zealanders in the 4th ODI where he scored 110 runs off 115 balls but still couldn’t see New Zealand through the chase.
Overall, West Indies recorded a Team IMPACT of 2.07 as compared to New Zealand’s 1.71 which clearly shows the difference in the level of performances from both the sides in this series and even though New Zealand fared much better with the bat (comparatively) in the last few ODIs, it was the West Indian bowling which stood out significantly in comparison to their counterparts.
For more information, please go to www.impactindexcricket.com