We often look upon stats for the quality of the bowlers. Particularly, number of wickets is what grabs our attention. However, numbers don’t reveal everything about the match situation. Number doesn’t say anything about the quality of bowling that got the wicket. This fact becomes more apparent in the limited format. Regardless of the kind of batsman who got out in the bowling, it goes into the statistics.
Wickets with new ball vs Wickets with old ball:
Generally, wickets which are taken in very initial overs of cricket match have more impact. But, does the scalp taken at the very end of the match is anywhere comparable? Unfortunately, not.
More often than not, new ball wicket is prized when the bowling is up to the mark though it is somehow assisted by the movement of ball. Slog overs scalps are more comprised of tail-ender if not middle order batsman. And, we all know, every team has their best batsman at the top order. Hence, the quality of wicket at the beginning is more than at the end.
Wickets while slogging vs Wickets while trying to settle in:
Top order batsman look to be settled in the crease at the start of their inning. So, batsman don’t usually take risks. Hence, it becomes difficult to take their wicket. It takes some really good bowling to make the batsman out. However, if one is prized with wicket in death overs, sometimes, the wicket is also aided by the err in the batsman’s side or due to the lack of hitting ability. It makes more easy for bowlers to pick wickets.
Also, fatigue can contribute to the fall of wicket in the slog overs which is a huge advantage for death bowlers. We also should carefully observe kind of impact the wicket made in match before looking merely at the statistics.
By Sudarshan Regmi