Winning the toss has become a vital aspect of cricket. In a few games, toss can become a deciding factor in the result of the match. The recently concluded 20-20 World Cup saw teams getting a lot of undue advantage because of the toss. Given that there was dew in the evening, the team that won the toss opted to bowl and later chased the target with ease.
A cricket fan, however, has come with a unique way to mitigate the problem faced by opposition teams after losing the toss. Cricket has evolved a lot over the years as the game has seen different formats, new technology, and an unorthodox style of play. The toss however remained constant. The winning skipper eventfully has his say, which at times proves decisive in the outcome of the match.
Associate Professor Haris Aziz, a game theory expert from UNSW has come with a brilliant method to minimize the advantage of winning the toss. He calls the method as Toss, Propose and Choose.
In the first step, the coin is tossed up in the air and one of the skippers make the call. Then the skipper who has lost the toss gets a chance to make a proposition to the winning captain. For example, the losing skipper can propose a 100-run handicap on an absolute belter of a batting deck. This means that the team batting first will start with a lead of 100 runs or 100 runs will be deducted from their first inning total. The winning skipper then can make a call on batting or bowling first.
“The reason I think this method is quite fair is because it has a mathematic justification,” Professor Harris Aziz said on 3AW Drive.
It remains to be seen if the method proposed by Aziz is deployed in the coming few years.