The expected value of possession in professional rugby league match-play
- Publication Type:
- Journal Article
- Journal of Sports Sciences, 2016, 34 (7), pp. 645 - 650
- Issue Date:
Copyright Clearance Process
- Recently Added
- In Progress
- Closed Access
This item is closed access and not available.
© 2015 Taylor & Francis. This study estimated the expected point value for starting possessions in different field locations during rugby league match-play and calculated the mean expected points for each subsequent play during the possession. It also examined the origin of tries scored according to the method of gaining possession. Play-by-play data were taken from all 768 regular-season National Rugby League (NRL) matches during 2010–2013. A probabilistic model estimated the expected point outcome based on the net difference in points scored by a team in possession in a given situation. An iterative method was used to approximate the value of each situation based on actual scoring outcomes. Possessions commencing close to the opposition’s goal-line had the highest expected point equity, which decreased as the location of the possession moved towards the team’s own goal-line. Possessions following an opposition error, penalty or goal-line dropout had the highest likelihood of a try being scored on the set subsequent to their occurrence. In contrast, possessions that follow an opposition completed set or a restart were least likely to result in a try. The expected point values framework from our model has applications for informing playing strategy and assessing individual and team performance in professional rugby league.
Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: