Wednesday, 5 May 2010

England see both sides of Duckworth-Lewis

Being in Paul Collingwood's company would not have been pleasant had the complicated maths involved in the Duckworth-Lewis method gone against England once more.

The England captain couldn't hide his frustration after England lost to the West Indies under the method, despite posting a tournament high of 191 in their 20 overs. But a sloppy start by England's bowlers was compounded as the rain came down in Guyana.

The mathematical system, which was introduced in 2001, set the Windies a target of just 60 from six overs with all their wickets in hand. The system isn't ideal, but it was also designed with 50 over cricket in mind, not T20.

As Collingwood said a score of 191 would win the game 95 per cent of the time so for the system to skew the odds the other way is proof it is flawed in this format.
England then had a dreaded sense of deja vu as the rain came down again during their match with Ireland. In truth they weren't as impressive with the bat as they were against the Windies, and credit has to go to the Irish, in particular pace bowler Trent Johnson and young leg spinner George Dockrell.

However, it was Irish-born Eoin Morgan, who made a composed 45, who dragged England to 120-8.

Ireland were 14-1 from three-and-a-half overs in reply, but found themselves dodging the rain. There was a real worry in the England dressing room that the maths would fail then once more. The cricket betting suggested England are in with an outside chance of winning the competition, but had things gone wrong they could have fallen at the first hurdle.

After a prolonged break, Ireland were set a revised target of just 47 from 33 balls before a final burst of rain ended the contest without a result being reached.
No one would argue against using Duckworth-Lewis to decide a game - using run-rate ratios or best scoring overs is unthinkable, as past experience shows.

However, the past two games have shown adjustments need to be made for its use in the T20 format of the game. After all, losing a match because a formula needs rejigging is not what cricket is about.

Meanwhile, in other sports news, England remain third favourites in the FIFA World Cup odds as this year's tournament approaches.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

It’s always sad to see matches being interrupted by rain.
I found one interesting article titled “Rain Ball for uninterrupted Cricket Games”. It discloses a ball which could be used to play cricket even in rain.
To read more plz check http://www.sinapseblog.com/2011/03/rain-ball-for-uninterrupted-cricket.html

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