Stats - Australia's spotless WTC campaign

June 11, 2023

Home comforts

Australia's road to the final was boosted by their dominance at home; they won eight of the ten home Tests and were the most successful home side in this WTC cycle. They were the only unbeaten side at home, as the remaining two games ended in a draw - both in Sydney, where the weather had a say. One of those came during the 2021-22 Ashes, where Australia had England nine down in the fourth innings at stumps on the final day.

Australia did well in away games as well, including winning a series in Asia since 2011. They beat Pakistan 1-0 and had a 1-1 draw in Sri Lanka before losing to India by 2-1.

All-round dominance

Australia had the best batting average in this WTC cycle with 36.95, while their bowlers averaged 26.23, only behind South Africa (25.11) and India (25.17). The difference between Australia's batting and bowling averages in this cycle was by far the best among the nine teams. India, the runners-up, were second with 4.16.

New Zealand (0.94) were the only other team with a positive difference. India (10.34) and Australia (8.73) also had the highest difference in batting and bowling averages during the previous WTC cycle. The eventual champions, New Zealand, were third with 6.51.

The batting might

During this WTC cycle, nine batters scored 1000-plus runs. Out of those nine, four were from Australia. The quartet of Usman Khawaja (1621), Marnus Labuschagne (1576), Steven Smith (1407) and Travis Head (1389) finished among the top six run-getters of the 2021-2023 WTC cycle. Joe Root (1915) was the overall leader, with Khawaja second.

They played a crucial role in Australia posting big first-innings totals. All four scored over 1000 runs each in the team's first innings. No other batter from any other team managed that. Three of the seven 250-plus partnerships in this WTC cycle were by Australia.

Among bowlers, Nathan Lyon topped the overall wickets tally with 88 scalps.

The Boland force

Scott Boland had played 79 first-class matches before his Test debut, the longest any Australian specialist bowler has waited. But he made an immediate impact by picking up 6 for 7 in the Boxing Day Ashes Test. His control has been excellent. Bowling on a good length in the channel outside off, he has pocketed 19 wickets at an average of 5.42.

He has 33 Test wickets so far include 22 second-innings wickets, at only 8.18. Playing as Josh Hazlewood's replacement in the WTC final, and despite no prior experience of Test cricket in England, he stood out with crucial strikes. He dismissed an in-form Shubman Gill twice in two innings, and dismissed Virat Kohli and Ravindra Jadeja in the same over on the final morning.

It was the sixth occasion in eight Tests that Boland struck multiple times in the same over, the joint-most by any bowler since his debut, alongside Jack Leach and Jadeja. His average of 14.57 in this WTC cycle is by far the best average for anyone with 25-plus scalps, and his strike rate of 37.8 is only behind Kagiso Rabada's 34.8.

No real toss advantage

Pat Cummins and Smith, when he led the side, won 14 out of 20 tosses; their 70% success rate was the best for any side. Australia won seven of those Tests, lost three and drew four. On six occasions when they lost the toss, they never lost the match. They won five of those six matches, including the final.

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