130415 Performance Against Ranking 2013 Football Season


I am following three of the four football codes in Australia in the 2013 season. The three codes are: Australian Rules, Rugby League and Rugby Union. This is my fourth post about Performance Against Ranking (the first post is here).
I am interested in the performance of each team against their ranking in the 2012 season. (There is some background information here.) I have a basic notation to monitor trends:
I have indicated whether there is: a home win (HW), home loss (HL), away win (AW), away loss (AL), home draw (HD) and away draw (AD) in each colour code. I identify a draw as a losing draw for the higher ranked team and a winning draw for the lower ranked team (for example, the Brumbies v the Kings in Round 8 of Super Rugby).

Australian Rules

Round 3 of 2013 AFL season was concluded on Sunday.
AFL Round 3
The two notable victories in Week 3 were Essendon’s win at Fremantle and Port Adelaide’s home win against Adelaide. Essendon is the first team to win this season despite having two quarters with single figure points. Essendon came back from a 36 point deficit to win by 4 points. Port Adelaide overcame a 15 point deficit at half time to win by 9 points.
After three rounds of the competition, the cumulative winner’s average and the round by round winning averages are:
Winner 3
For losers:
Loser 3
Carlton has lost three games despite averaging 101 points per game. By quarter, Carlton’s performance thus far:

Rugby League

Round 6 of the NRL was completed yesterday evening with a victory for the Titans over the Eels.
The Storm ended the Rabbitohs‘ winning start to the season. There were two wins by lower ranked teams this week. The Roosters defeated the Bulldogs and the Broncos defeated the Cowboys. Only one of the seven teams in the lower half of the 2012 rankings won against a higher ranked team this week (the Roosters) as was the case last week (the Eels were the victors then).

Rugby Union

There have been nine rounds of the Super 15 Competition to date.  Round 9 was a volatile week (as was Week 8).  The Chiefs, Crusaders, Hurricanes and Rebels lost to lower ranked opponents. The Rebels lost after the final siren against the Kings.
S15 9


One of the important issues for me, in all three football codes, is whether teams can win at home against higher ranked opponents. I think this has enormous implications for a team’s support. Away wins against higher ranked teams are very important too.
This week in the AFL, Port Adelaide had a home win in their local derby against a higher ranked Adelaide. Essendon won away from home against a higher ranked team, Fremantle. In the NRL, there were home wins for the Broncos and the Roosters against higher ranked opponents (the Cowboys and Bulldogs respectively). The Roosters held the Bulldogs to 0 which is significant achievement for a lower ranked team. In a volatile week in Super 15, the Chiefs and the Rebels lost at home whilst the Crusaders and Hurricanes lost away.


  1. The colour scheme bothers me. Red and green make sense, yellow a bit, but blue is totally out of place. I can’t visualize anything with those four colours. If it were me, I would use dark green for home favourite win, light green for road win, light red for road loss, and dark red for favourite home loss.
    Also, I’m a bit bothered by the designation of favourite. Now 6 rounds in to the season, we can hardly call the Bulldogs (with a 1-5 record) favourites any more. I think you’d get a more interesting graph if it designated a favourite win or loss with the favourite designated at the time of the game (I think Tattersalls, or something like that, indicates favourites for each round, but you might have difficulty finding who the favourite was 6 weeks ago – but records must exist). If you don’t like wagering odds, you can just use W-L records, or points for-against differential.
    Anyhow, just some thoughts.

    • Stephen
      I am delighted that you found the post. I really appreciate your insights (and your passion for sport). I will look again at the format.
      Originally I chose blue as a cold colour! My graphic is retrospective in so far as I use 2012 rankings. I think your suggestions are excellent, Stephen.
      Thank you!
      Best wishes

  2. I’ve been following this whole series of posts on the performance against ranking graph. So this email actually follows some weeks of thought about the matter. It bothered me right away but I didn’t send an email until I had actually thought of an alternative colour scheme.

    • Stephen, I really appreciate your interest. I appreciate how busy you are and I am overjoyed that you have given so much thought to this.
      Thank you!


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