The race for the Professional Cricketers’ Association Most Valuable Player Rankings title is going to go to the wire.
Durham’s opening batsman Keaton Jennings took advantage of a blank week for Warwickshire to reduce Jeetan Patel’s lead at the top of the rankings table to just 21 points.
Jennings made his seventh century of the season, a Durham record, in the thrilling victory over Surrey in the Specsavers County Championship and went past 500 PCA MVP points for the campaign.
Jennings took 52 rankings points from the Surrey match, 43 of them for his first innings 201 which constituted 50 per cent of Durham’s total of 401.
His first innings haul also took Jennings into 36th place of the best single innings scores since the PCA MVP Rankings were introduced in 200.
Patel has an opportunity to extend his lead at Lord’s tomorrow when Warwickshire face Surrey in the Royal London One Day Cup final but the winner of this season’s PCA MVP title is unlikely to be decided until next week’s final round of championship matches when Warwickshire host Lancashire in a relegation tussle at Edgbaston and Durham, whose win over Surrey secured First Division cricket for another season, play Hampshire at the Ageas Bowl.
Patel goes into the Lord’s final in fourth place in the RLODC PCA MVP and with a good chance of overtaking Graeme White of Northamptonshire to top the 50 overs rankings. Patel has 124 points, 16 behind White whose campaign ended with Northamptonshire’s defeat by Surrey in the quarter-finals.
In the Specsavers County Championship PCA MVP, Jennings is 20 points behind Warwickshire’s Keith Barker on 351 points with Patel in third place on 327 points.
The PCA MVP was introduced in 2007 and is designed by the players to find the cricketers who really win matches by combining all aspects of a player’s performance to give a ranking in relation to his peers.
The MVP formula gives full credit to those players whose performances improve their team’s chances of winning. Points are accrued for all runs scored and wickets taken; these are then adjusted within the context of the match to take into account strike rates and economy rates.
Runs gain more points if they are scored quickly or in low-scoring contests. Top order wickets taken at the start of the innings are judged more valuable than those that fall later, and bowlers who bowl their overs cheaply (in the context of the match) are given due reward for doing so.
The weightings in the revised formula have been scaled so as to provide continuity with previous seasons, ensuring that the value of an MVP point this year is equivalent to those allocated under previous formulae.