Six games to go in the BBL – possible results

We now have only six games to go over the next week in the Big Bash League, and this means the number of possible finals arrangements is becoming much more manageable. There are 64 different outcomes depending on who wins each of those six matches.

This is the table as it stands now:

Team Played Won Lost NRR
Melbourne Stars 6 4 2 +0.786
Brisbane Heat 6 4 2 +0.557
Perth Scorchers 7 4 3 +0.331
Sydney Sixers 7 4 3 -1.062
Sydney Thunder 7 3 4 -0.097
Hobart Hurricanes 7 3 4 -0.179
Melbourne Renegades 6 2 4 -0.003
Adelaide Strikers 6 2 4 -0.157

In the case of teams on the same number of points, the net run rate will be used to break ties.

The teams have been split into four tiers. The Stars and Heat stand in a clear lead having won four matches and with two to come. The Renegades and Strikers are clearly at the bottom of the table, with only two wins, but with two matches to come. The remaining four teams have only one match left to come, with the Sixers and Scorchers on four wins and the Thunder and Hurricanes on three wins.

In this post, I’ll show the proportion of scenarios where a team would clearly make the finals, clearly miss out, or find themselves in a tie to be broken by their net run rate. It should be noted that I’m not attempting to judge the chance that each team will win any of the matches – just the possible outcomes if they win or lose.

Firstly, this shows how often, out of the 64 different scenarios, how often a team would make the finals, not make the finals, or depend on their net run rate.

Team Finals No finals NRR decides
Melbourne Stars 49 0 15
Brisbane Heat 48 0 16
Perth Scorchers 32 0 32
Sydney Sixers 34 0 30
Sydney Thunder 0 34 30
Hobart Hurricanes 0 32 32
Melbourne Renegades 0 48 16
Adelaide Strikers 0 51 13

The Stars and Heat have approximately 75% chance of cleanly making the finals. Each team needs to win one of their two remaining matches to make the finals without any doubt. The Scorchers and Sixers will make the finals if they win their remaining match, and if they lose they will depend on their net run rate. There is a narrow scenario where the Sixers lose their remaining match and still cleanly make the finals – if the Renegades beat the Strikers, the Strikers beat the Thunder, the Scorchers beat the Hurricanes and the Heat beat the Renegades, there will be no need for any tiebreakers. In that case, the Sixers-Stars match on the final day will only matter in determining exactly where the finals are played, and which teams play each other.

The Renegades and Strikers need to win both of their matches to have a chance of making the finals (so tomorrow night’s head-to-head between those teams will eliminate one of them). The Thunder and Hurricanes also need to each win their remaining match to have a chance, but will also rely on a high net run rate to make the finals.

We don’t know exactly where the net run rate will end up, but we do have the information about how teams have gone so far. The Stars, Heat and Scorchers all have a healthy net run rate, well above zero. The Sixers, despite winning a majority of their matches, has a terrible net run rate thanks to a massive defeat to the Thunder last night. The Thunder had a very bad net run rate, but that has been largely neutralised thanks to their defeat of the Sixers in ten overs.

Amongst the teams in the bottom four, the Renegades have the best net run rate, while all four teams have a better net run rate.

For my final table, I ranked teams in each tie according to their current net run rate, although this may change in the remaining six matches.

Team Finals chance
Melbourne Stars 100%
Brisbane Heat 100%
Perth Scorchers 100%
Sydney Sixers 53.1%
Sydney Thunder 18.8%
Melbourne Renegades 12.5%
Hobart Hurricanes 9.4%
Adelaide Strikers 6.3%

The Sixers’ terrible net run rate means that they will not make the finals if they are forced into a tie, unless they can manage a massive defeat of the Stars in the final match of the season. The Stars, Heat and Scorchers will make it through any tie, so they will all make the finals unless their net run rate significantly worsens in the remaining matches.

If the Sixers are stuck in a tie, that fourth finals position could go to any of the four remaining teams, with the Thunder and Renegades having the best chance of pulling through.

Tomorrow night’s Strikers-Renegades match will definitely eliminate one team from the tournament. If the Renegades win, their chance of making the finals will double from 12.5% to 25%. If the Strikers win, the Sixers will have a 50% chance, the Thunder will have a 25% chance, and the Hurricanes and Strikers will each have a 12.5% chance.

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