16 January, 2018

Player Stats

Let's Talk About Player Stats

If you've played in a SMASH Tourney, you know that the actual game scores as well as the games won and lost in each match are recorded. What for? Stats man... STATS!

One thing cool about playing in events that use the EvenSquash Handicap System is that you can get a lot of information about your game and other players that isn't available in most other events. Traditional squash events box players according to their deemed skill level so that 4.0 players play other 4.0 players and, if there are not enough players, the box can be expanded to to include a range of skill levels like 4.0 to 5.0 players play each other. But in a handicap for format, you play any other squash player regardless of skill level and not just those deemed to be in your skill level box. This means that you are measured on how well you play anyone at any skill level - all the time.

So here are some of the stats from the 13 players in the Jan 6 SMASH Tourney and some insight into what they mean.
Player% Must Win PointsSkill LevelGames On Record
Adam S.87.8%4.021
Andrew M.85.1%3.540
Nick G.85.0%3.517
Paul M. 83.2%5.521
Rehan S.80.6%4.512
Carl N.80.4%3.025
Assam J.79.0%5.521
Roland D.76.9%3.040
Adam M.76.7%3.55
Clair B.74.8%3.05
Jeff D.74.0%3.040
Paul D. 73.9%3.529
Michael F. 23.2%2.54
What do the numbers mean?
% Must Win Points. These are the number of points you need to score in order to win a game. For example if a 3.0 player plays a 3.5 player using the EvenSquash Handicap System, the game is played as 8 points to 12 instead of the usual 11 to 11. This means that the 3.0 player must score 8 points to win the game and the 3.5 must score 12 points to win the game. So the Percentage Must Win Points for that game is the percentage of the number of actual points scored divided by the number of points needed to win a game.
Games on Record. These are the number of games there is data for the player. This is capped at the most recent 40 games which works out to about the number of games an average player would play 4 to 6 events. If you see a Games on Record less than 40, it means there's just not enough data to get a good feel of squash skills yet.

The overall percentage for a player shown in the chart above is the average of the % Must Win Points over the most recent 40 games. Pretty cool.

What is it good for?
Player strengths and likeliness to win. With their Must Win Points percentage you can now tell how strong a player is for their skill level. For example, two 3.5 players, one hitting 70% and the other hitting 80%, means that the 80% player plays better than the 70% 3.5 and is most likely to win. This can also be applied to matches of different skill levels too. Take a 3.0 hitting 80% of their must win points versus a 5.0 hitting 70%. If the two were to play each other in an EvenSquash handicapped game, the 3.0 is more likely to win even though their skill levels are drastically different.... but there are no guarantees in just one match and that's why it's averaged over the most recent 40 games.

When to adjust a player's skill level. A pattern formed from all the SMASH Tourneys over the past 18 months: Players hitting above 85% of their must win points, usually win the tournament at their skill level. Andrew M. (3.5) is the most recent case in point - He won the Jan 6 SMASH Tourney, hitting 85.1% of his must win points over the past 40 games. This means that as we see players hitting more than 85% over their past 40 games, it's time to bump them up to the next skill level. Likewise, if you see a player continually sliding and maybe hitting below 65%, it's time to drop their skill level. Adam S. (4.0) is hitting 87.8%! This would usually be the time to promote him to a 4.5 but there are only 21 games of data for him and that's not enough to make a promotion - we need 40 games.

Player rankings. You can rank players without actually having them play each other. This creates a real time ladder based on all the events a player participates in. If you want to move up the ladder, play in more events and hit more points. I currently have such a ladder made up of players that frequently play in the SMASH Tourneys and includes players like: Jeff D. (3.0), Roland D. (3.0), Assam J. (5.5), Andrew M. (3.5), and Rehan S. (4.5). I've got over 20 players on the list, let me know if you want to be on the list or not.

Chart performance. Over time, you can see a player's percentage change indicating they are improving, degrading, or flat. You could then drill down to see where they are struggling, what level of player they struggle with, or perhaps how to earn just a few more points per game.

New event formats and prize categories. Imagine a Best of the Best tournaments that might be invite only events where the two or three players from each skill level who hit the most points are invited to face off to see who is truly the best. Most Improved awards could be handed out every 90 days or so to the player who's hitting percentage increase the most. This is not just thinking outside the box, it blows the box up!

If you are a details person and would like to see the full spreadsheet used to tally everything. check out:  1.06.2018 SMASH Player Stats

Anyway - there's a lot that can be done with some simple stats across all squash players, not just those in your skill level range. If you have ideas, I'd love to hear them.

The next SMASH Tourney will be held 11am Saturday JAN 27 at Lifetime Fitness - Sandy Springs. Registration is open! JAN 27 Squash SMASH Tourney Registration Form. You can see all upcoming SMASH events on the SMASH Tourney Schedule.

Check the side bar for the latest Squash SMASH Tourney's Winner's Circle and other info about the EvenSquash handicap system and tournaments.

Until the next event, you can always follow along with live updates and latest info on Twitter @EvenSquashFacebook @EvenSquashInstagram @EvenSquash. And you can always add your email address (see the left side bar) to get emails about the latest posts.

Up and down the wall!
 - Bob -

No comments:

Post a Comment