Dubai: The Indian Premier League (IPL) has often polarised opinions among fans of the game — being blamed for batsmen’s overall deterioration in technique or Test matches not lasting the distance. A recent study by a Kolkata-based statistician and cricket nut, however, dispels such myths about the cash-rich league which entered it’s 11th season this year.
The most startling observation of the study, conducted by Subhasis Ray as part of the doctoral thesis, is that the runs per over (RPO) in the Tests matches in a sample survey from 2000-2015 involving India has actually gone down in the post-IPL period. “The figure is not statistically significant. However if the trend continues, it may become a statistically significant decline in coming years,” Roy said in a recent interview to drive home his point. The study by Roy, a professor at Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management (IISWBM) of Calcutta University, says the Anova technique of study however showed a significant increase in “percentage score in boundaries.” It also reflects a significant change in the contribution of tailenders, with batsmen from No.7 and 11 scoring more number of runs in the post-IPL era from 2008 and 2015 in the Test matches involving India.
The Analysis of variance (Anova) is a collection of statistical models and their associated estimation procedures used to analyse the differences among group means in a sample.
Another significant observation in his study is that there has been statistically no significant difference between average number of overs played per Test match over the period under review — in all Test matches involving India — indicating that the length of Tests has also taken no beating in the post-IPL era.
“The success of IPL has prompted other sports in India like hockey, football, tennis, wrestling or kabaddi to develop clones of this franchise format. However, no base version of the sport had been challenged as much as cricket’s [read: Tests] and my study would hopefully establish that this league has not actually had a negative role in the longer format,” concluded Roy.
A study, which may be music for the mandarins of Indian cricket broad.
— Ray can be reached at Subhray69@gmail.com