Monday, May 26, 2014

Mumbai - Rajasthan NRR situation over-analysed

Since posts related to the IPL seem to get me a lot of hits on this blog here is another one. Yesterday, while I was watching a rather boring Indy 500 race, I heard shouts and screams from our neighbors who are cricket fans. This quickly distracted me and thankful I was because I witnessed one of the most bizarre cricket match endings I have ever seen.

The confusion was huge, mathematical and needed some time to get round to. I believe that the teams, even after the scores were level at 14.3 overs had not a true idea of the situation. As this facebook post by Mayur suggests that even if 14.4 where a dot ball, the Mumbai Indians still had a shot at qualifying if they hit 14.5 for a boundary.

In fact, cricinfo has further gone ahead to explain that even if 14.4, 14.5 and 14.6 were a dot ball, Mumbai could still make it to the play off by hitting a six off the 15.1 delivery. Assuming of course sportsmanship from Rajasthan who would not ball a no-ball post 14.4.

Further analysis from an over the coffee table debate has spurred an interesting idea. I am going to argue that even if 15.1 were a dot ball - on paper, Mumbai still had a chance to make it to the play offs. All they had to do was a little rain dance.

No complication in cricket is complete without a discussion on the Duckworth Lewis system[citation needed]. In fact with all the confusion that was yesterday, I am surprised it was not mentioned.

Cricinfo's "net run rate explained" page tells us that -
"[if] a result is achieved under Duckworth/Lewis, for net run rate purposes Team 1 will be accredited with Team 2's Par Score on abandonment off the same number of overs faced by Team 2."
Which means that if it rained when the scores are level at 14.5 and the rest of the game abandoned, then Rajasthan's score would have been reduced. By how much? The D/L system calculation is clearly out of the scope of this blog post, But we do have this handy tool to help us.

These calculations suggest that Mumbai would have won by 58 runs if rain poured in at 14.5. Which would make the net run rate look like this -

Net Run Rate

This would qualify Mumbai for the play-offs and cause Twitter to accuse the Rain Gods to be Ambani's agents.

If no wicket falls this can go on till ball 16.4 where Rajasthan would be safe even from the rain Gods. Here is a plot for who would have won given ball when it rained, and Rajasthan did not concede an extra.

As the plot shows, Rajasthan could take 2 more wickets to seal the match earlier.

No comments:

Post a Comment