In the aftermath of the India vs England game,  many questions were raised about the dismal Indian bowling attack.  Having personally witnessed Strauss tear apart the bowling like cheap toilet roll,  it was time to call upon the STAT TURD again to investigate the stain remains.

MTJAG had mentioned in it’s preliminary diagnosis that the bowling and fielding left much to be desired. A feeling was that outside of Zaheer Khan, the rest of the Indian bowling left a lot to be desired, and especially more was expected from Bhajji – who is supposed to be our primary strike bowler along with Zaks.

STAT TURD took the controls from there and here are the basis for comparison:

1. The data taken was for the performance of the bowlers in the home conditions ( eg Indian bowler in India, SL bowler in SL, and neutral bowler in Asia). This is because- well the world cup is going on in these conditions,  isn’t it?  STAT TURD feels that the performance in the in the host nation alone would still be sufficient even if India or SL plays in the other nation. This should be reasonable enough an assumption

2. STAT TURD has essentially taken 3 key indicators – Average (Runs given per wicket) , Economy Rate, and Strike Rate ( Deliveries bowled per wicket) as points of comparison

3. Bowlers in consideration are Bhajji, Murali, Steyn, Vettori, Zaheer and Munaf.   All bowlers (except Steyn) had close to 20 or more games in the home conditions. Other spinners such as Swann were not considered because of 2 few games.

Bowler Comparison-
Bowler Comparison-

Do Click on it to get a larger view .  Basic Summary:

1. Bhajji has a higher Average AND Strike Rate than all the other bowlers he has been compared to. That means he gives away more runs per wicket and needs more deliveries per wicket

2. Bhajji has a middling Economy Rate – but wait- it’s the highest when you compare him with the other 2 spinners.  He has a better Economy Rate than the pacers, but that could be understandable as the pacers often end up bowling during the powerplays.

Now , STAT TURD decides to check on the performance of the 3 Indian Bowlers under MS Dhoni.  Let’s see how that turns out:

Captain's Bowlers?
Captain's Bowlers?

What are our findings , ye ask?

1. Bhajji seems to have a more significant dip in his performance with MSD as his captain when compared to his overall career!  Is it age or field placements?

2. Munaf’s economy rate has drastically increased during his stint under Dhoni. This could be because he used to be employed more often as a 1st change bowler before, but now used as a new ball bowler under Dhoni – hence exposing him to the Power Plays.  Would it make more sense to keep him 1st change? Only time will tell.

STAT TURD, while finding these numbers , also took a quick peak at under which captain did these aforementioned bowlers bowl better under. The answer? Surprise, surprise — it’s RAHUL DRAVID!  Yep, all 3 bowlers were significantly better in all 3 categories under Dravid compared to Dhoni. Don’t get too frustrated though – it could be because the PPs have been in full force during Dhoni’s time as a captain from 2007.  However , that is a topic for another day.

What do you all think?