Sunday, 22 June 2014

Cricket stats and betting

Stats play an important role in betting on cricket. They form a key part of my match betting preparation and a good grasp of them can be the difference between profit or loss.

Cricket is awash with stats so it is important to focus in on the ones that are important. I break them down into useful or useless from a betting perspective.

I like to know stats that might help give me an edge in a market being offered by a bookmaker rather than something that is of more general interest to a cricket enthusiast.

Useful stats for me are things like knowing a Twenty 20 ground is in the top 5 six hitting venues in the world, or the lowest Multi 4s ground in the world, or an ODI venue having a huge bat first win percentage in day / night games. I don't really care about what the highest 3rd wicket partnership at a venue is.

If possible I also want my stat preparation work to provide likely scripts for the match I am looking to bet on. This simply involves looking for groupings of landmark criteria, specific to the venue, that tend to lead to certain results.

Basic examples are things like if in a T20 match the team batting first scores more than 48 in the first six overs it goes on to win 7 out of 8 times. If the bat first team scores 172 or more it wins 11 out of 12 times.

Or maybe if the bat first team scores less than 32 in the first six overs it loses 8 out of 11 times. Or if it scores under 132 it loses 6 out of 7 times.

Now, of course, in any betting heat the specifics impacting on the match in question (teams, weather, pitch, boundaries etc) need to be taken into account. But if these kind of landmarks are hit, and especially if multiple landmarks are hit, it gives me more confidence to take stronger positions in the match odds market.

So where do the cricket stats come from?

I've mentioned elsewhere I have my own cricket stats database and also given a brief insight into the type of information I use it for.

But I know successful cricket punters who have no such database and simply prepare for each game individually drawing on the historic matches they feel are relevant.

There are plenty of places on the web that provide all manner of cricket stats enabling them to do this. Before I had my own database I found the Cricinfo Statsguru tool and elements of the howstat site particularly useful.

The point is you don't need your own bespoke cricket database. Having the ability to draw up several reports for a match in a few minutes is no doubt quicker than doing it manually. But all the information is out there to help anyone profit from statistical preparation.

Of course, knowing lots of stats is not everything. Stats can be misleading, even dangerous. Poor interpretation of them and subsequent bad implementation of bets can cost plenty of money and these are areas I will look at in later posts.

Ultimately though cricket stats can be useful when it comes to betting on cricket.

They key is to focus on relevant stats, find information that provides an edge against the markets, interpret it correctly and act on it.

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