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  1. #1
    Regular Member jajvirta's Avatar
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    Default "Elo rating" of professional badminton players

    There has been some discussion about applying a rating system like chess has, the Elo rating, to badminton. Now, I'm not an expert on rating systems, but for the fun of it, I calculated similar ratings based on Fargo Rating system. It's pretty close to Elo rating (and Go's rating system) and it works on a similar principle.

    Such a rating system gives every player a numerical rating and based on these ratings, you can calculate the probability of the most likely outcome of any two players' match. If the rating difference is exactly 100 points, then the better player is twice as likely to win any given point. In other words, given two players with a 100 point rating difference in a badminton game, the most likely outcome is 21-10 points (or, if you want to be exact: 21-10.5).

    The probability of a player winning a single point can be calculated from the equation = 1 / (1 + 2**(rating difference/100)). Obviously, extrapolating this to a whole match is problematic, but I hope these numbers can give some interesting insights anyhow.

    So I added most of the major tournaments since the last World Championships (including the WC) and calculated the Fargo Ratings of the professional male players. This is how the top looks like:

    593 (700) Chong Wei Lee
    578 (700) Dan Lin
    577 (700) Long Chen
    573 (700) Jin Chen
    550 (700) Simon Santoso
    549 (700) Ajay Jayaram
    548 (700) Sho Sasaki
    548 (700) Peter Hoeg Gade
    543 (700) Kenichi Tago
    542 (700) Jan O Jorgensen

    The first is the rating, second is robustness, ie. the number of points played. (The robustness is cut at 700. The bigger the robustness, the slower the rating changes.)

    Now, first thing to note is that if you take the rating difference of LCW and LD/CL, the expected outcome of a single game is around 21-19 in LCW's favor. So that's a pretty tight in expected outcome. A fifty point difference in this scheme would predict 21-15 as the most likely outcome.

    Chen Jin's rating is pretty high, considering his record against the top three players. I would assume most wouldn't put their money on him against LCW or LD, even with favorable odds. But if you look at his results, he's still pretty consistent against most players and plays pretty tight matches even against the top three.

    The odd one out here is Ajay Jayaram as his current ranking is around 27th, but his rating suggests that he "should" be ranked higher. Again, if you look at his results, the rating should not come as such a big surprise anymore. In the major tournaments, he has usually lost in pretty tight matches against the top players.

    Let me know what you think about the ratings. And ask for more details about the system if I didn't explain clearly enough.

    Below is a longer rating list.

    593 (700) Chong Wei Lee
    578 (700) Dan Lin
    577 (700) Long Chen
    573 (700) Jin Chen
    550 (700) Simon Santoso
    549 (700) Ajay Jayaram
    548 (700) Sho Sasaki
    548 (700) Peter Hoeg Gade
    543 (700) Kenichi Tago
    542 (700) Jan O Jorgensen
    539 (700) Yun Hu
    538 (556) Tommy Sugiarto
    538 (700) Hans-Kristian Vittinghus
    536 (700) Kashyap Parupalli
    536 (419) Gurusaidutt R. M. V.
    536 (700) Wan Ho Shon
    535 (700) Tien Minh Nguyen
    535 (700) Hyun Il Lee
    534 (211) Anand Pawar
    531 (240) P Kashyap
    530 (642) Viktor Axelsen
    529 (700) Wing Ki Wong
    528 (700) Zhengming Wang
    526 (700) Pengyu Du
    525 (700) Kazushi Yamada
    524 (499) Dionysius Hayom Rumbaka
    524 (374) Takuma Ueda
    521 (308) Daren Liew
    520 (401) Tanongsak Saensomboonsuk
    519 (485) Muhammad Hafiz Hashim
    517 (700) Marc Zwiebler
    516 (700) Taufik Hidayat
    509 (261) Zi Liang Derek Wong
    509 (700) Pablo Abian
    507 (216) Choong Hann Wong
    504 (700) Rajiv Ouseph
    503 (426) Brice Leverdez
    501 (209) Joachim Persson
    501 (369) Boonsak Ponsana
    Last edited by jajvirta; 02-06-2012 at 04:06 PM.

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    Looks kind of weird to be honest

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    Now we know the feats of concentration and diligence that Finns are capable of during the short dark days of winter. We knew Finland could produce more than Sibelius, reindeer and Molotov cocktails.

    I admire the concentration and effort you put into this system.
    But to assign numbers to the infinite variables of the human experience seems slightly 'mechanical' to those who love the art and unpredictability of the game. I mean absolutely no offense, but if this scale is accurate, the only people who would be really pleased would be those who know little about the game but love betting money.

    Look forward to other points of view.

  4. #4
    Regular Member jajvirta's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fidget View Post
    But to assign numbers to the infinite variables of the human experience seems slightly 'mechanical' to those who love the art and unpredictability of the game. I mean absolutely no offense, but if this scale is accurate, the only people who would be really pleased would be those who know little about the game but love betting money.
    Well, to be honest, that's a pretty accurate assessment. :-)

    That said, my own hope that such numbers can reveal something non-obvious or give confirmation to hunches. As an example, I think the tight rivarly between LCW, LD and CL is mostly because they are pretty evenly matched. These numbers suggest that if you look all the results included in this sample, LCW is slightly above LD/CL, but it's so close that it could go either way. In other words, it's not that LCW is way better than, say, CL and happens to lose against him because of the mental game. The numbers suggest that CL is so close to LCW's skill level that it is no surprise that the matches go either way.

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    Many of the points raised by my thread on Elo apply here. I'm particularly interested by the guy who is 27th, but possibly should be much higher. The current system used in many sports does bias things towards those who are already in the higher rankings. For example, 9th to 16th in the world avoid the rest of the top 16 for 1 round longer that 17th to 32nd. Therefore, they tend to go 1 round longer, get more points & retain their position.

    Elo doesn't have a ratings uncertainty/robustness, but I've heard of a Glicko system which does apply one. Essentially, the more games you play, the tighter your rating becomes. Conversely, the more rating opportunities that you miss (e.g. through injury), the wider your rating becomes.

    Whether this form or rating is better or worse than what is currently used is down to opinion. Elo et al. favour consistent players who do well against most of their peers. Round-based points favour the guy who is occasionally brilliant.

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