Sunday 21 February 2021

So, what to make of our new card holders?

Few ways we can look at how things will shake up, so let's go through some of them. In retrospect, I probably should also have picked up on the players who just missed out, given they're already up to the fourth (!) player on the alternates list, but it is what it is. First off, percentage of legs won:

Now some of this may be a bit misleading, as players that didn't enter at the first stage didn't get to stat pad against any of the fun players, so let's look at things another way:

Here we're doing a similar thing, but we're breaking it down by the speed in which legs were won, and sorting by the number of all legs that were won within fifteen darts. As such, you don't have a great deal to worry about with Barney, he's looking pretty good, but the few below also seem pretty competent, especially when you consider that most of them came through straight from the final stage, so you don't get the sorts of cheap wins that you might otherwise get. The worrying thing is that for Worsley, whose overall winning percentage was the lowest, he can't really say he's got too many of them overly quickly. Suppose the other thing to note is that Schindler's got an awful lot of legs won in twelve darts or better.

As our prediction tools only work off won legs, and then tweak based on losing average in comparison to that, let's see if the order changes wildly if we remove lost legs, and still sort by fifteen dart win percentage:

There's a few changes here. All of a sudden Murnan looks like the man to beat, with Barney, Mitchell and Schindler weighing in at over 50%, and quite a few floating around at roughly that mark.

How does that compare to the tour as a whole though? Looking back at the last twelve months, it's not overly favourable - the first player in terms of overall scoring that is below 60% in terms of proportion of legs won being in fifteen darts or less is Gurney, and he's fifteenth. To find a player that is below 55%, you need to go down to Steve Lennon or Andy Boulton, and you need to go down as far as Ryan Murray before you get someone who is below 50%.

That a large number of players are below 40% is a bit of a concern, especially with those who have got a very high percentage of legs that are won in seven visits or more. There is a huge caveat though, there's going to have been plenty of games in the first stage where someone's been playing a jobber, hasn't needed to rush a leg, and a 21 dart kill is going to be more than enough. Fortunately, I built the stage into the data model, so let's take out the entirety of the first stage and also eliminate the round of 128 entirely, so we're just looking at players who've at least managed to win one game to filter some of this out:

Now de Vos is looking a heck of a lot better, although the players at the top are mostly the same. I'd normally look in terms of who has come through on points as who might have the better shots, but it's a huge mixed bag - the likes of Murnan, Schindler, Lukeman and Williams, sure, they're looking decent, but Worsley, Lerchbacher, Zonneveld and even Soutar have got to be a bit questionable.

One thing to note about Baggish - he's a bit low here, but he's not been gifted many legs at all. He's got quite a high proportion of kills in six visits, but after that, he's either taken things out, or got it done beforehand. Koltsov, by comparison, may have looked pretty good on paper, but has been given a heck of a lot of free legs.

Might be worth taking a cheeky punt on Murnan in this series. Nothing crazy, but there's certainly bookmakers out there who'll give you quarter the odds to make a semi. He has won one of these before, and clearly looks to be playing at a decent enough standard.

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