The Justice Mudgal committee which looked into possible corruption in the Indian Premier League has mentioned that the game between Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings played in Jaipur on the 12th of May 2013 was possibly fixed. CSK, batting first, were 83 without loss in 11 overs, at which point their “mascot” (let’s call him that since his official status is unclear) Gurunath Meiyappan allegedly said that the team was unlikely to score over 140 (refer to the video with Gaurav Kalra and Sharda Ugra on Cricinfo). The team finished on 141, with Dwayne Bravo finishing with a quick 23 in 11 balls.
I have an algorithm similar to the WASP algorithm used in the recent New Zealand-India ODI series which I use to evaluate player performances in each game. For this particular game, the following table shows the batting ratings (according to this algorithm) for various players.
You can notice that apart from Dwayne Bravo, all batsmen from Chennai Super Kings (look at the batting column) had a negative rating. The two players with the most negative batting ratings, you can see, are Ravindra Jadeja and M Vijay. The question is which of these two was more culpable for the innings slowdown in the latter half.
Our algorithm allows us to analyze performances in parts of innings, so let us break down the innings into two – before Mike Hussey got out (on 11.3 overs) and after. When did Vijay collect his -10 score?
Vijay started slowly, getting to a cumulative -5.3 after four overs. Then, starting in the sixth over he started hitting out. By the time Hussey got out in the twelfth over, he was at 10.17. Raina and Dhoni both perished in the 13th over. At the end of that, Vijay was at a still respectable 8.49 (the wickets falling having evidently slowed him down). And then Ravindra Jadeja walked in.
For the next four overs, when Vijay was at the crease, he diminished his team’s chances of winning by 8%, 4.5%, 5.6% and 1% respectively (total of 19%). He then got out, and Bravo came in to make amends and take the team to 141. What of Jadeja?
It is interesting to note that Jadeja held steady while Vijay was slowing things down (overs 13 to 17), but once Vijay got out, he had two massively horrible 18th and 20th overs (he didn’t get to bat in the 19th, when Bravo took all the strike!).
Was it the handiwork of some particular bowler that Jadeja was quietened in overs 18 and 20? No! The following graph shows the over-wise performance of Chennai Super Kings (a negative number means Rajasthan Royals got the upper hand in that over). Colour of the bars vary by bowler. No one bowler did superlatively well for RR.
The negatives in the 12th and 13th overs are on accounts of wickets falling. And then there is a series of negatives, with Vijay and Jadeja batting. Then Bravo comes in, gets himself a positive, but Jadeja continues to get really negative. And it’s not really one bowler who bowled superlatively well.
Draw your own conclusions.