Virender Sehwag’s Scissor Statistics

Over at Kridaya, Krishna raises a question I once posed about Sehwag’s conflicting ODI (30s) and Test (50s) averages. He has charts and wunderkind stuff; I have mere conjecture.

But I’m still a bit confused. Krishna rightfully concludes that Sehwag can go on and on unless the opposition gets him out early. That’s still begging the question. Why does Sehwag get out early more in ODIs than he does in Tests?

The simplest answer to the puzzle is that Sehwag’s Test average has been inflated by his many big centuries, which he can accumulate because of the length of a Test match. Without those innings, he would be just as mediocre as he does in ODIs. Right?


5 thoughts on “Virender Sehwag’s Scissor Statistics

  1. Well, it’s the Michael Slater effect! Slats had a test average of 42 but an ODI average of 24! :O And he was said to be one of the best attacking Aussie batsman of his time..

    Getting down to the issue, Viru says it himself. He says that he likes Tests better than ODIs because he gets a chance to settle down and get his eye in. If you notice nowadays, for the first half an hour or 1 hour, he doesn’t play any overly aggresive strokes. He plays the watching game and gets an idea of the pitch. Once he feels he’s ready, he’ll go all ballistic!


  2. Russ says:

    DB, there is an easy way to work that out. Assume that every test innings longer then 150 balls was curtailed at that point (that is, at half the number of balls in a ODI innings), and Sehwag was not out.

    The result: 5226 runs at 48.85.

    That makes little difference. Sehwag is, incidentally, a very inconsistent player, by my measure, along with Lara and a couple of others, one of the most inconsistent of all time. But that is not the reason here, I think.

    CT may be onto something with respect to Slater. Slater seemed to relish gaps in the field, which you get in a test, but not a ODI. He struggled to get away in the shorter format because he was forced to hit over the top. It was not his natural game, and his average suffered. Perhaps captains could learn from that with respect to Sehwag.

  3. duckingbeamers says:

    Excellent point, Russ. But surely there are gaps in an ODI, no? Especially for an opener — imagine all those people in the circle for those first 15 overs?

  4. Russ says:

    Test matches have slips, gully, maybe a short leg, so there are lots of singles by pushing gaps along the ground. In the early part of an ODI that isn’t true, I don’t think. A batsman has to pierce the field or go over the top.

    Which is why, incidentally, I’ve long advocated that captains should bring fields in to increase the pressure, rather than gifting singles in the middle overs.

  5. Sam says:

    its his ability to destroy the attacks that makes him count in an elite league.

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