Sunday, September 07, 2008

Anantha's rankings place Sachin on top of all-time ODI batting heap - and then...

I wrote an email to some of my friends a while ago, opining on the ODI all-time batsmen's ranking published by Anantha on It Figures, the cricinfo stats blog. I want to share that email with my other set of friends - you:

A cricket writer called Anantha has tried to judge the ODI greats on all counts and arrived at a conclusion that Sachin is the greatest ODI player, just above Richards.

I had once declared to Abhijit that Sachin was the greatest ODI batsman - but I was nowhere near sure I will be able to prove that against that mountain called Viv. I started collecting data in 2006 but then the efort lost steam. However I never thought (and have my doubts) that Sachin is this comfortably ahead of Viv.

It appears Sachin went past Viv quite comfortably based mainly on the fact that he did his stuff for 400 ODI's, a signifcantly greater number than matches played by Viv. And also by those MoM's unfairly awarded to Sachin in the late 90's when Ajit Agarkar took 4 wickets to restrict opposition to 220 and Sachin got the MoM by scoring a facile 100.

And Sanath - he is almost up there with Viv. Wow. Many people may have their reservation about that but I do not. In fact, I am very happy with that because practically the only occasions when an ODI in the last 30 overs has not had the excruciating middle overs were when one of these 2 guys (ranked at numbers 2 & 3) were at the crease after over 20.

Look at the number 10 on that list, by the way. Anyone having doubts on that? Reply to SRK with phone number to talk to King Khan.

Could not go through the long basis of judgement text, frankly. Will be nice to know about that from some of you.

-- Angshuman

PS: I just checked - we have an update. The writer has made some corrections based on feedback and also on his own quest on the wide gap betwen Sachin & Viv. Now he has done corrections and with those Viv is 77 & Sachin 75. If you allow me to be the decider, I think that is not fully correct either - Sachin should be just ahead. Why - no answer. Just feel so.

Number 10 has gone down to number 17 and Dravid is above him at number 16. More controversies - stats are difficult. Makes me happy for Dravid though - and if we go through the details we are more likely to find that his peerless ability to anchor chases in his heyday brought him up that far.

The heavyweight at number 8 though could not be moved an inch by these trivial stats tweaks.

Footnote: Concerned at that part of Anantha's closeout note where he says a reader should learn to look respectfully at the many cricketing greats other than his idol instead of trying to belittle them: It surely has come from the comments Anantha has received, and it is quite sad that people need to be told that. Commenting from readers in cricket sites has unfortunately deserved reactions like Anantha's for a major part of the past few years.

Update: In response to Anantha's posts, Ric Finlay comes out with ANOTHER analysis putting Sachin on top once again. However the gap between Sach & Viv is too wide for comfort, much like Anantha's 1st Sep list with Sachin on top. Let's back off from the analysis heat for the time being with the thought that even perfectly logical ratings of these greats can be as numerous and unique as fingerprints.


Anonymous said...

Ratings or no ratings, Tendulkar is the BEST batsmen.

Anonymous said...

btw have u read this? on Sadanand Viswanath

angshu said...

That's nice - to know he is doing even better than he was doing 2 years back when I wrote a Pavilion View post based on the following SWportstar article: