Which cricketers possess X-factor? A comprehensive guide

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How do you measure X-factor? Does it come in units or is it a subtance. Does Glenn Maxwell give you one X-factor or does he provide you with a few centilitres of X-factor that you can pool along with whatever can be provided by Mitchell Johnson, David Warner and Xavier Doherty?

Either way, the team with the most X-factor will win this World Cup. From what we’ve read, there will be a direct correlation between it and results – that much is clear.

But which players possess X-factor? Our feeling has always been that you either have it or you don’t, but today Cricinfo are asserting that Luke Ronchi is evolving into New Zealand’s X-factor which suggests that you can gradually attain more and more of this quality.

A friend of ours used to work in a nursery. She was forever losing her rag with three-year-olds pretending to be Pokémon (Pokémons? What’s the plural?). They’d squat down, do some sort of weird vibrating mime and say: “I’m evolving!”

“No, you’re not,” she’d spit. “You’re metamorphosising!” Then she would start talking to them about genes and natural selection.

So perhaps Luke Ronchi is evolving in the Pokémon sense and will emerge as a fully-formed X-factor player at some point soon. Or maybe it really is a gradual process and one of his hollow limbs is slowly filling with more and more X-factor fluid.

Whichever it is, we can state only one thing with confidence: very few of our World Cup cricketers to watch are X-factor players.


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  1. Aha! I think we’ve finally solved the reason why David Warner is, and has to be, an arsehole.

    In Pokémon (and the plural is the same), the more you make your cute critter fight and “faint” other Pokémon, the more experience points it gets. Get enough experience, and it levels up. Get enough levels, and it “evolves”.

    David Warner is obviously the cricket equivalent: a Crickémon, if you will. By fighting other players, like Joe Root and Rohit Sharma, David is trying to gain more X-factor.

    Eventually he’ll knock somebody out on the cricket pitch, and then he’ll evolve into his final form. Probably with four arms and wings.

    1. There is a battle move in Pokémon called “Steel Wing”, so it’s not impossible.

      There’s also a move called “X-Scissor”. I can only assume that this was a misspelling of “X-factor” by the translators.

  2. When I was a youngster, my parents used to watch a particularly daft game show called The Krypton Factor. I seem to recall that they loved to hate it, at the “I don’t know why we watch this rubbish” level.

    I only saw it very occasionally, finding homework, youth club and latterly chasing girls more edifying/interesting. But I recall a weird cross between Mastermind and It’s A Knockout.

    Anyway…is there a relationship between a Krypton Factor and an X Factor? A simple rate of exchange between the two, for example. Perhaps some sort of correlation – positive or negative.

    I do recall that points accumulated in the game were described as “Krypton Factors”, so there are certainly units involved. I just wonder whether we might be enlightened by reference to this additional, scientific factor.

    1. Are you suggesting there should be an assault course round in the World Cup?

      Or a land the flight simulator one?

      I could get behind either suggestion.

  3. I think your majesty may have his question back to front. Assuming the modern cricketer needs X-Factor, it must certainly be more important to work out which winners of that abomination of a television show would be top quality criketers.

    Obviously Joe McElderry is disqualified due to the fact that his effort was beaten by a 17 year old Rage Against the Machine song. Unfortunately I know of literally no other winner so that’s the end of my helpfulness on this issue.

    On a slightly related topic, where would you put RATM’s Zach de la Rocha if he was on your village XI? I would be tempted to make him the wicket keeper as he’d be good at sledging. I would worry that he may use the opportunity to convince the slip cordon, gully and maybe square leg that the laws of the game fly in the face of human dignity and start a sit-in right in the middle of the wicket.

    From all that, we can glean 2 important facts:

    1) I’ve lost too much sleep trying to keep up with the CWC warm up matches.
    2) It was likely a mistake to try and cure it with medically inadvisable amounts of Rage Against the Machine.

  4. This is the only scorecard in a ODI where everyone scored more than 10 and no-one scored 60.

    Afghanistan innings (50 overs maximum) R M B 4s 6s SR
    Javed Ahmadi c †Patil b Amjad Javed 12 25 17 2 0 70.58
    Usman Ghani run out (Krishna Chandran) 11 31 17 1 0 64.70
    Nawroz Mangal c Amjad Ali b Amjad Javed 16 21 17 2 1 94.11
    Asghar Stanikzai c Amjad Javed b Krishna Chandran 33 75 55 1 2 60.00
    Samiullah Shenwari c †Patil b Amjad Javed 58 146 80 3 0 72.50
    Mohammad Nabi* c Khurram Khan b Mohammad Naveed 30 26 30 3 1 100.00
    Najibullah Zadran c Rohan Mustafa b Mohammad Naveed 46 41 39 6 1 117.94
    Afsar Zazai† c Khurram Khan b Amjad Javed 17 39 21 0 1 80.95
    Mirwais Ashraf not out 34 31 17 4 1 200.00
    Gulbadin Naib c Rohan Mustafa b Krishna Chandran 24 10 10 2 2 240.00
    Extras (lb 14, w 10, nb 3) 27
    Total (9 wickets; 50 overs) 308 (6.16 runs per over)

    1. I just looked at the scorecard, thesaurusrus.

      There is an immediate problem with your theory: more than eleven-a-side matches are not ODIs.

      Someone far better than me might be able to tell us how many actual oDIs, if any, have complied with your chosen criteria.

      Perhaps you should stick to stats about beards and girth. Fewer confounding variables.

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