batting control boundary

Written by Zain Ul Hassan 8:52 pm Articles, Pakistan, Published Content

Cricket Batting Performance Analysis: Control, Boundaries & Boundary Control

Zain-ul-Hassan analyzes over 5 lac deliveries using ball by ball data of T20 cricket from January 1, 2015 till date. He uses this data to identify and categorise different kinds of batters and their control over the ball while playing shots.
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About the Author(s)
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Mr Zain-ul-Hassan is a cricket enthusiast, cricket data analyst, writer, and journalism school graduate.

In cricket, batting prowess is a critical aspect that often defines a player’s impact on the game. By analyzing key metrics such as control percentage, boundary percentage, and boundary control percentage, we gain valuable insights into the batting abilities of various players.

In this article, we delve into these metrics and identify the players who excel in each category. We casually analyzed batters with intent and control over their shots for some 500000 deliveries and almost all the matches played from January 1, 2015 till date were included in our ball by ball data set. 

control, boundary, and boundary control percentages

Control Percentage

Control percentage measures a batsman’s ability to consistently execute shots with precision and timing. A higher control percentage indicates greater mastery over shot selection and execution.

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Top Players by Control Percentage

Sam Hain – 95.38% 

Virat Kohli – 81.13%

Kane Williamson – 80.99 %

Jos Buttler – 76.14%

David Warner – 75.49%

Shikhar Dhawan – 74.83%

Babar Azam – 74.81%

Boundary Percentage

Boundary percentage reflects the frequency at which a batsman scores boundaries (fours and sixes) relative to the total number of deliveries faced. A higher boundary percentage signifies a batsman’s ability to find gaps in the field and capitalize on scoring opportunities.

Top Players by Boundary Percentage

Alex Hales – 22.89%

Suryakumar Yadav – 22.33%

Chris Gayle – 22.25%

Aaron Finch – 18.90%

James Vince – 18.75%

Boundary Control Percentage

Boundary control percentage combines control percentage with boundary-hitting proficiency, indicating batting effectiveness in scoring boundaries when in control of shots. A higher boundary control percentage suggests superior shot execution and placement.

Top Players by Boundary Control Percentage

Sam Hain – 97.36%

Virat Kohli – 90.25%

Jos Buttler – 90.02%

Kane Williamson – 89.47%

Rohit Sharma – 89.41%

Sam Hain is again a surprise entry who plays attacking shots (just 4s and 6s) with 97.36 percent control. Interestingly, Chris Gayle who played boundary shots more than often has just 59.70 percent control over his shots. If we draw a scatter plot to define the relation between boundary percentage and control shot percentage, we can easily split batters into high intent % high control % to low intent % high attacking % and vice versa.

I have divided these players in 4 different quadrants with 

1- High Boundary % – High Control %

2- High Boundary % – Low Control %

3- Low Boundary % – High Control %

4- Low Boundary % – Low Control %

Boundary% vs Control % scatter plot

Players like Vince, Sharma, Hales, Buttler and Livingstone come in the first category. They usually have control > 75% and boundary % > 18 shots/100 balls. Batters like Roy, Chris Gayle, SKY, Maxwell, QDK, Munro, Ingram, Pollard, Guptill, Dawid Malan, Warner and Finch falls under category 2. These players hit the boundary more often but have less control over the ball while playing the shots. 

Batters like Kohli, Sam Hain, Babar, Williamson, Laurie Evans, and KL Rahul are of same breed. They have more control over the ball and hit boundary less often than 18 boundary shots per 100 balls. They fall in category 3 of low boundary percentages but higher control over their shot percentages. Rizwan, Malik, Miller, Faf, Dhawan and Stoinis  are batters with lower boundary % and lower control %, falling in category 4.

One thing the boundary % vs control % scatter plot has helped us with is in identifying the batters which play and are advocates of the same brand of batting. Alex Hales (1164) has played the most boundary control shots, followed by Jos Buttler (1101), James Vince (993), Colin Munro (977) and Babar Azam (904). 3 out of 4 times, Babar Azam has control over his shots and he scores boundaries on 18 out of his 100 balls faced. These are some of those gauges which we can analyze to measure a player’s authority on the batting field.

A surprising entry for me was Sam Hain who has been a prolific batter. Keep an eye on this lad. By examining such metrics, we can identify the standout performers in various aspects of batting, providing valuable insights into their contributions to their teams’ success on the cricket field.

If you want to submit your articles and/or research papers, please check the Submissions page.

The views and opinions expressed in this article/paper are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial position of Paradigm Shift.

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