Monday 17 June 2019

World Cup simulation update

The group stage of the World Cup is now roughly half way through, and there are 4 clear favourites to be the semi-finalists.

Afghanistan is the first team to be eliminated (they may have a mathematical possibility, but they don't have a statistical one). At this point, Sri Lanka are not far behind.

The rankings of the teams have remained fairly consistent, suggesting that the extra weighting for world cup matches is about right.
The fact that almost all the teams seem to have gone up is due to them all being relative to Afghanistan. Afghanistan do not seem to be quite as good as they were seeming to be and so they have dropped, but as they are set to 0, it's pushed everyone else up slightly.

The semi-final probability is the most interesting. 

I personally feel that this is underestimating the chances of South Africa, but we will see as the tournament progresses.

The key point on this graph is match 5, where Bangladesh overcame South Africa. If South Africa had won that match, they would be on about 40% and New Zealand and Australia would both be a lot lower.

The simulation also puts out the points for 4th, 5th and the difference between them. This suggests at the moment that there's only a fairly low chance that net run rate will come into play. However, one more rained out match, or a Bangladesh upset of Australia, and this could change dramatically. This makes the expected lines to be 9 points for 5th place, and 11 points for 4th place.

So far of the teams that I've had as favourite to win, 14 out of the 17 have won. Given the probabilities that the models assigned them, that's slightly higher than I would have expected - I would have expected there to have been 4 upsets rather than 3, but it's still telling me that my model is working quite well. That may be due to teams not always playing their best combinations in every match between the world cup, adding extra uncertainty to the results than exist inside a world cup.

It will be interesting to see if it continues to have the same success rate after the cup is finished.

Finally, applying the same system to find the probable winner gets the following results:
England are still favourites, but India are not far behind them.

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