Saturday, February 16, 2013
Round Robin Results In The AFL NAB Cup
Currently, in the first round of the AFL NAB (pre-season) Cup, the 18 teams are split into 6 pools of three, and each pool of three plays each other within the course of a single night (e.g. last night Essendon played the Dogs, then the Dogs played Collingwood, then Collingwood played Essendon). On the way to breakfast this morning, Ms Wheatley suggested that I take a look at the NAB AFL Cup results and see what the results were like for ‘1v3, 2v3, etc…’
‘Damn it … ,’ I said, ‘Now I have to do that …,’
I did think of weaselling out of doing it by suggesting the topic to @AFLFootyMaths instead, but no, this was my burden to bear! Actually, it’s not much of a burden … since the round robin format only started in 2011 the sample size is just 13 pools.
For the purposes of the comparisons, team 1 in each pool is the team that plays in the first two matches of the night, team 2 plays in the first and third matches, and team 3 plays in the second and third matches.
1v2: 5 wins to team 1, 8 wins to team 2, net margin to team 1: -9 points.
1v3: 3 wins to team 1, 10 wins to team 3, net margin to team 1: -191 points.
2v3: 6 wins to team 2, 6 wins to team 3, 1 draw, net margin to team 2: +69 points.
So far, though team 1 has lost 8 out of 13 times against team 2, on point differential they have been fairly even (as one might expect). However, team 1 has fared relatively badly against the rested team 3, losing 10 out of 13 times, for a net margin of -191 points. This might indicate that team 1 is disadvantaged by having to play back-to-back matches, but again, it’s a small sample to date. In matches between teams 2 and 3, it’s all tied at 6 wins apiece (with one draw), but the net margin is 69 points in the rested team 2’s favour. Again, that might indicate a disadvantage from having to play back-to-back matches, but we might have to wait a few more years to get stronger evidence yet.