Sunday, January 18, 2004
The secret of success in modern cricket is...
... Experience. Boring as it sounds, it seems like to be the only differentiator between cricket teams today. Modern cricket is a thoroughly analyzed sport, like most others. There isn't much left to chance or "talent". The surprise element is usually afforded briefly by a new player who is very quickly absorbed and clinically "taken apart".
It seems to me that the new formula for success is:
- Find a decently talented young cricketer e.g. Parthiv Patel
- Let him play lots and lots of games e.g. Waugh, Ganguly, Srinath, Shoaib
- Eventually he'll come good e.g. Waugh, Ganguly, Srinath, Shoaib
The Aussies under Allan Border figured out the value of sticking to the same teams/coaches/trainers for long stretches of time. Combined with their superior training regimen, they became a significant force in cricket. This also explains the coming of age of the Indian team - literally. Sri Lanka has also put a similar system in place with great success also. South Africa was also chugging along just fine with the formulaic approach until the Hansie Cronje scandal upset the apple cart. Pakistan, on the other hand, keep throwing up so many new and talented youngsters... they are the the team with the biggest "surprise element" in cricket today. New Zealand follows the formula, but they just don't play as much cricket as the others and are also going to suffer as a result.
Given the successful entry of Michael Clarke and Brad Williams, it seems like Australian cricket will be fine for years to come. Pakistan needs to put this formula into place, since they are never seemingly short of talent in either the bowling or the batting departments.
This assertion can be statistically proven with sufficient data... hmm...