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The India-Windies T20 gap since 2016


West_Indies_ODI_dark_horse_legacy_CricketThe World T20 win in 2016 underlined the fact that the West Indies were a formidable force in the shortest format of the game with their irresistible ball strikers. By thumping Ben Stokes for four sixes in the final over of the finals, Carlos Brathwaite established himself as international cricket legend. Three years hence, as he leads a team out against India, the team they defeated in the semi-finals in 2016, he knows that West Indies are the underdogs.

West Indies’ decline in the shortest format has coincided with a sharp rise for India, despite their reluctance to see the ODI and T20I sides as different. But how wide a gap has come between the two teams in this three-year period? We dig up the stats to give more insights.

Overall T20I records

Win percentage for teams in T20Is since WT20 2016

West Indies have only played 33 matches since the World T20 in 2016, winning just 11 of them. On the other hand India have played 42 T20Is, the most by any team, winning 26 of their matches. India boast the third best win percentage – 61.9% – among all major teams. Only Afghanistan and Pakistan have a better T20I record in this time period. Meanwhile West Indies lurk just above Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Ireland with their win percentage of 33.33% in this time frame.

Batting records

Much of West Indies’ success in the 20-over format stemmed from a power-packed batting unit. But with a number of players choosing T20 leagues over playing for the country, they have chopped and changed their lineup with quite a few names in this period and haven’t always been able to play their best eleven. This has affected their batting performances immensely.

Batting average and strike rate for teams in T20Is since WT20 2016

West Indies have a team batting average of 18.37 in this time frame – second worst among all major teams – and a batting strike rate of 119.36, the worst among all teams considered.

The strike rate issue is particularly glaring, for it was one area where they thrived previously. Surprisingly, Indian batsmen, who are often deemed conservative hitters in this format, have a combined strike rate of 139.79, the best among all teams. They also average 32.68 with the bat which is again, by quite a distance, the best among all teams.

No other team has a batting average above 30 while the only team to come close to India in terms of strike rate is New Zealand with 139.02.

Individual batting records

Players with over 500 T20I runs since WT20 2016

Among Indian and West Indian players, the batting dominance is evidently tilted India’s way. They have six players who have scored more than 500 runs in T20Is since the 2016 World T20 while the only name from West Indies is Evin Lewis with 637 runs. Lewis has played only 19 matches in this period and averages 35.38 with two centuries, an impressive record for someone who plays in a team with little support.

Rohit Sharma, Shikhar Dhawan and KL Rahul lead India’s batting numbers with 1,039, 894 and 879 runs respectively. Virat Kohli, who has been rested on and off and has thus missed games in the format, also has 500-plus runs and averages 36.58 in the format. What’s even more striking is that all of India’s top four run getters in this time frame have a strike rate above 140.

Bowling records

India’s T20I bowling stocks have seen a meteoric rise since the introduction of Jasprit Bumrah and the wrist spin twins – Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav. The three have ensured that the bowling attack does not foil the efforts of the batsmen and can even win matches without them.

Bowling average and economy of teams in T20Is since WT20 2016

India’s bowling average of 24.25 and economy rate of 8 since the 2016 World T20 is not impressive by itself, but there is a wide enough gap between them and the Windies, who have been dreadful. The West Indies have a bowling average of 28.85 and an economy of 8.2 in the format, the worst apart from Bangladesh, Ireland and Sri Lanka.

While Indian bowlers have 10 four-plus wicket hauls in this time frame, West Indies have just three, which underlines the lack of good individual performances for the Caribbean side. India also tend to take wickets at more regular intervals – a strike rate of 18.2 compared to the West Indies’ 21.

Individual bowling performances

Bowlers with 20 or more wickets since WT20 2016

Unsurprisingly, Chahal, Kuldeep and Bumrah have been responsible for 113 of the 260 wickets India have taken in T20Is in this period. The Royal Challengers Bangalore spinner leads the wicket charts with 46 wickets in 31 matches at an average of 21.13 and three four wicket hauls. But Kuldeep trumps Chahal in terms of bowling average – a miserly 12.97 in 18 matches – and economy – 6.72 as against Chahal’s 8. Kuldeep has 35 wickets in this period and is closely followed by Bumrah, who has 32. Bumrah’s average of 19.78 and economy of 6.75 also sit pretty well in terms of bowling statistics in this format of the game.

West Indies have two names in the list of bowlers with 20-plus wickets but Kesrick Williams, who has the most wickets, is no longer part of their side. Brathwaite, the skipper, comes next with 26 wickets but he has been quite expensive with an economy of 8.43. Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Hardik Pandya also make the list for India with 21 wickets apiece.

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