RCB Wins IPL 2021 As Per Predictive Simulation by Reddit User

RCB Wins IPL 2021 As Per Predictive Simulation by Reddit User
Image: RCB Official Website

With the 2021 edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL) seeing an indefinite postponement, fans can’t stop thinking about scenarios that might have played out if the tournament didn’t come to an abrupt end. While 29 league games had been played prior to the halt, there was an inkling of what the top four would look like. 

However, one enthusiast has taken it a step further by devising a simulation based on the programming language Python to determine the winner of the competition. The hard yards were put in by Reddit user Adhish Jain also known as u/VisibleAct. 

Jain’s simulation makes use of predictive analytics to determine how the rest of the league stages may have played out, ultimately determining the top four teams for the Playoffs. Since randomization techniques were used, chance played a big factor in this particular simulation. 

Data of players from the last five years was used to determine how each ball would be played. Jain ran the code for the whole season, then decided to run it for the remaining games of IPL 2021, starting with the cancelled game on May 3. 

“I extracted each player’s past five years’ data for batsmen and bowlers. What kind of runs a batsman scored – singles, doubles, fours or sixes – what kind of runs the bowlers leaked, against what bowling did a batsman thrive, when they scored their runs – powerplay, middle overs or death – what mode of dismissal bowlers dismissed batsmen the most with and vice-versa how batsmen got out. This includes detailed data such as frequency of wides or no balls or the average catches taken by a player in a game,” Jain explained in an interview with Wisden.

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How did the tournament fare in this randomized simulation? 

One of the biggest surprises of this simulation was that defending champions Mumbai Indians marginally miss out on qualifying for the Playoffs (really?) with Punjab Kings holding a slight edge over them in terms of Net Run Rate or NRR. 

Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) managed to finish on top of the table with Delhi Capitals securing the second spot. 

Meanwhile, Chennai Super Kings (CSK) and Punjab Kings end up in three and four respectively. The Eliminator between the two teams ends up with Punjab Kings as the victors, while RCB took the first Qualifier against DC, making their way to the IPL Finals. 

This brings us to the second Qualifier between DC and PBKS. The simulation predicts DC to cruise to a victory in this game, setting up a top of the table 2021 IPL Finals between RCB and DC. 

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The (simulated) Final

To conclude the simulated version of the IPL 2021 Finals, RCB wins by a margin of 50 runs, and hence their first IPL trophy. With RCB batting first, AB De Villiers is out for a golden duck, but Glenn Maxwell comes through with a short cameo to help RCB post a respectable total. Maxwell also shines later in the game as he picks up two crucial wickets with his off-spinners, playing a key role in this simulation to hand the Bengaluru-based team its first-ever title. 

For fans who are starved of cricket during these extraordinary times, scenarios like this can offer a glimmer of hope and excitement, even if it’s temporary. 

Back in the real world, the remainder of the IPL is expected to be concluded sometime this year with venues like the UAE, UK, and even Sri Lanka emerging as contenders. 

It is no doubt going to be tough to fit in the IPL this year amidst the hectic international schedule for the Men in Blue. The Indian men’s cricket team will resume international duties starting with the World Test Championship Final against New Zealand at Southampton, UK, from June 18.  

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