As we near the climax of the thrilling IPL season one phrase is likely to take more precedent in the following few days more than the Kamaal Catches, Moments of Success or even the (dare I mention) Blimp. That phrase is the oddly confusing “Net Run Rate“.
The phrase has been used over and over again for such a long time now that it seems very surprising that majority of average cricket fans have absolutely no idea of how it is calculated! For most its seems like an impossible task (No sir, the impossible task is to figure out the Duckworth Lewis system)
Oddly, the calculation of Net Run Rate is a very simple mathematical affair. Just like each team and their opponent has a runrate in any cricket match(Runs scored per over), the NRR for a team is just the run rate for the team minus the runrate they have conceded(ie of their opponents), in the entire tournament.
But there are a couple of conditions for the calculation. Like if a team is bowled out then the runs scored will be added to the aggregate(for the calculation of Net Run Rate) but the overs played will be taken as the maximum for that innings(20 for a T20 and 50 for a ODI). Also if a match is abandoned then the runs scored or the overs played will not be added to the aggregate score.
The beauty of NRR lies in the fact that a team can win a match and still have their NRR go down. That happens very rarely but it occurs when ever a team under performs from their usual average and just manages to scrape through with a win.
There are some interesting examples in the Wikipedia page of Net Run Rate, reading which will probably make you a NRR whiz :P
So there you go, hope this post helped you learn something new about your favorite sport, more importantly now you can explain something to that uncle of yours who keeps talking about how straight drives were straighter back in his time.