WLB Analysis : The Path To IPL Profit


OUR IPL man Josh Healey (@joshhealey04) has taken a look at the best way to make profit from some of the key markets.

IPL Top Team Batsman Betting Analysis

From the last three IPL seasons (2012-14), in terms of percentages, this is how often each number in the batting order achieved top team batsman (from over 400 innings):

1. 21%

2. 25%

3. 18%

4. 14%

5. 11%

6. 5%

7. 4%

8. 1%

(Numbers 9 and 10 made up the remaining 1%)

From the percentages, we can gather that only the top five batsmen are worth considering in most cases. The key appears to be snooping out the value on batsmen in the top three, openers in particular. Monitor the form of the top three batsmen across all the sides and look to take advantage of prices around the 3/1 mark.

Let’s say you’re backing top team batsmen at average odds of 3/1, with level stakes of £10 – 10/30 winners would see you collecting a healthy profit of £100 at the end of the tournament.

To ensure your average odds remain at 3/1 or above, I’d advise against backing a batsman whose odds are below 5/2. The strike rate required to profit from bets around 2/1 in this market is simply unachievable. But remember, don’t discount no. 4’s and no. 5’s.

Keep an eye out for teams whose top 3 are struggling, or where they are playing against a side whose opening bowlers are in dangerous form and taking wickets early on.

If you are backing a no. 4 or no. 5 though, make sure they have an above average strike rate. Often their time at the crease will be limited and they’ll have to score very quickly in order to notch top team batsman.

IPL Man of the Match (MOTM) Betting Analysis

From the last three IPL seasons (2012-14), in terms of percentages, this is how MOTM awards were distributed to players of the winning side in order of regularity (from 210 completed matches):

1. 60.5% – Top batsman only

2. 25.7% – Top bowler, most economical bowler or both

3. 9% – None of the above or below criterion

4. 3.8% – Top batsman and either top bowler or most economical bowler

The first step to picking your MOTM bet is to decide which side you think will win the game, as MOTM is always awarded to a player on the winning side (barring a few anomalies).

There is a monumental bias in favour of the top batsman of the winning side, and so it’s a good idea to back a top five batsman who plays for the team which you think will win the game.

86.6% of the time this top batsman of the winning side will score 50 or more runs, giving us a good indication of what is required to earn the MOTM award as a batsman.

1 in 4 times an outstanding bowling performance will earn MOTM, but bearing in mind these performances could be achieved by all-rounders then it’s rarely worth backing an out-and-out bowler.

The 9% ‘none of the above or below criterion’ refers to a variety of scenarios where players contributed in different ways without top scoring/wicket-taking (mainly all-rounders), as well as some dubious MOTM decisions.

The percentages don’t lie – you’re better off backing batsmen in what is undoubtedly a batsman’s game. And as was shown in the first section of the article, if you’re picking a batsman you want to be picking one from the top 5, more often than not an opener.

To conclude, look out for in-form top 5 batsmen with high strike rates, ideally openers. Also scout for genuine all-rounders who bat in the top five and have the ability to take wickets. Out-and-out bowlers rarely win MOTM.

Supplementing Top Team Batsman Bets with MOTM Bets

As earlier, imagine you win 10/30 top team batsman bets. Of those 10 wins, say your batsman was on the winning side fuve times. Given that the top batsman of the winning side gets MOTM 60.5% of the time, you’d expect the MOTM bet to land three times.

Odds for top order batsmen to get MOTM will probably average around 9/1, and so that’s £27 profit if you use £1 level stakes. However if you placed the MOTM bet all 30 times, the £27 profit would be eroded entirely and you’d only break even.

A lot relies on a knowledge of which side will win the game. So the bottom line is, only supplement your top team batsman bet with a MOTM bet when you are confident that your batsman’s side will win the game, otherwise you could be wasting your money.

Remember these are just supplementary MOTM bets rather than MOTM bets in their own right, and so keep the stakes to 10% of those on the top team batsman bets.

Working example: You think Sunrisers Hyderabad will win and David Warner will top score for them. Place a £10 bet on Warner top Sunrisers batsman, and supplement it with a £1 bet on Warner MOTM.

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