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Statistical Comparison of the 2015 World Cup with the previous editions

Was it really a batsman-friendly World Cup?

Australia won the World Cup for the 5th time in their history

A lot of runs were scored; many sixes were hit and we witnessed a lot of wickets as well in the ICC World Cup 2015 hosted by Australia and New Zealand. Interestingly, the hosts met each other in the final at the Melbourne Cricket Ground to decide who would be crowned the champion of the World. In the end, it was the home team Australia that got to the World Cup trophy beating the Kiwis comfortably by seven wickets.

38 centuries, seven 150s, two double centuries, 3 400+ totals, 463 sixes and 2170 fours – a short summary of World Cup 2015 statistics. So much of talk about it being a batsman’s World Cup, but how about the bowlers?

Let’s compare the statistics and aggregates of this World Cup with the previous editions and see if it was really a batsman-dominant one like everyone says.       

Average Batting and Bowling Strike Rates in each World Cup

World Cup

Batting Strike Rate

Bowling Strike Rate

1975

59.84

48.60

1979

54.52

47.50

1983

61.99

47.80

1987

74.48

48.00

1992

66.47

45.80

1996

72.15

47.50

1999

64.85

41.40

2003

72.63

37.30

2007

75.87

39.20

2011

78.39

38.00

2015

88.97

36.90


If 88.97 runs were scored for every 100 balls, there was a wicket every 36.90 number of deliveries. The batting strike rate is higher than all World Cups. At the same time, the bowling strike rate is the best among all World Cups. Hence, both the batsmen and the bowlers had their best time in this World Cup.

The highest wicket taker and the player of the tournament Mitchell Starc took 22 wickets at a strike rate of 17.4 which is the best by any bowler who took more than 15 wickets in a World Cup edition. Josh Davey picking up 15 wickets had a strike rate of 20.0 and Jerome Taylor’s 17 wickets were at 20.2. In the top seven bowling strike rates among bowlers with 15 or more wickets in a World Cup edition, three are from this World Cup. 

Run-Rate in each World Cup

World Cup

Run-Rate

1975

3.91

1979

3.54

1983

4.08

1987

4.87

1992

4.42

1996

4.67

1999

4.47

2003

4.76

2007

4.95

2011

5.03

2015

5.65


The average run rate throughout this tournament was 5.65 which is comfortably higher than the previous best a World Cup had – 5.03 in 2011. 23531 runs were scored in 4163.2 overs in this edition.

Runs per wicket in each World Cup

World Cup

Runs per Wicket

1975

26.62

1979

25.58

1983

29.52

1987

32.52

1992

29.39

1996

32.12

1999

28.41

2003

27.84

2007

29.42

2011

29.18

2015

32.91


This year’s edition stands out in this parameter as well. 32.91 runs per wicket in this tournament just overcame the 1987 World Cup which had 32.52 runs scored per wicket. This is the first World Cup since the 1996 edition where there were more than 30 runs per wicket.

Number of centuries in each World Cup

World Cup

50s

75s

100s

125s

150s

200s

1975

41

12

6

3

1

-

1979

29

8

2

1

-

-

1983

65

29

8

2

1

-

1987

80

29

11

3

1

-

1992

92

33

8

-

-

-

1996

85

42

16

8

2

-

1999

86

30

11

4

1

-

2003

110

40

21

8

2

-

2007

131

52

20

5

2

-

2011

127

53

24

6

2

-

2015

149

68

38

16

7

2


This World Cup had the most 50+ scores, 75+ scores, 100+ scores, 125+ scores and 175+ scores. For the first time there was a double century in World Cup history. And there were two.

Until the previous World Cup, none of the editions had more than two 150+ scores but there were seven 150+ scores in this edition.

Centuries and half-centuries per match in each World Cup

World Cup

Matches

50+ score per match

100+ score per match

1975

15

2.73

0.40

1979

14

2.07

0.14

1983

27

2.41

0.30

1987

27

2.96

0.41

1992

39

2.36

0.21

1996

36

2.36

0.44

1999

42

2.05

0.26

2003

52

2.12

0.40

2007

51

2.57

0.39

2011

49

2.59

0.49

2015

48

3.10

0.79


More than three 50+ scores were recorded every match on an average in this World Cup which is the highest in any edition. Almost one century was recorded per match this time. In the previous editions, a century was scored after atleast two matches.

Sixes and Fours in each World Cup

World Cup

Matches

Fours

Fours/Match

Sixes

Sixes/Match

1975

15

575

38.33

28

1.87

1979

14

369

26.36

28

2.00

1983

27

914

33.85

77

2.85

1987

27

883

32.70

126

4.67

1992

39

1099

28.18

93

2.38

1996

36

1264

35.11

148

4.11

1999

42

1377

32.79

153

3.64

2003

52

1793

34.48

266

5.12

2007

51

1808

35.45

373

7.31

2011

49

1902

38.82

258

5.27

2015

48

2170

45.21

463

9.65


The fours and sixes have increased at a very high rate. An average of more than 45 fours were hit every match and almost ten sixes per match. It is the highest for any World Cup again.

Number of four and five wicket hauls in each World Cup

World Cup

Matches

4 wickets

Matches per 4 wkt

5+wickets

Matches per 5+ wkt

1975

15

6

2.50

3

5.00

1979

14

5

2.80

2

7.00

1983

27

6

4.50

8

3.38

1987

27

8

3.38

1

27.00

1992

39

8

4.88

0

-

1996

36

5

7.20

3

12.00

1999

42

15

2.80

6

7.00

2003

52

23

2.26

12

4.33

2007

51

14

3.64

3

17.00

2011

49

25

1.96

9

5.44

2015

48

21

2.29

7

6.86


There was a good number of four and five wicket hauls by bowlers but not at a good rate as in the previous World Cups. There were 25 occasions of a bowler picking four wickets in the last World Cup compared to 21 this time. Also there were nine five-wicket hauls and this time only seven. In the 1983 edition, there were eight 5-wkt hauls in 27 matches.

Number of 300+ totals in each World Cup

World Cup

Matches

300+ totals

Matches per 300+ total

1975

15

4

3.75

1979

14

-

-

1983

27

4

6.75

1987

27

1

27.00

1992

39

2

19.50

1996

36

5

7.20

1999

42

3

14.00

2003

52

9

5.78

2007

51

16

3.19

2011

49

17

2.88

2015

48

28

1.71


This World Cup had the most number of 300+ totals and they were scored very frequently than all the previous editions. 

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