FACTORS INFLUENCING SCORING EFFICIENCY IN
THE AUSTRALIAN FOOTBALL LEAGUE
Scoring Factors Contributing to Team Ranking;
INTRODUCTION RESULTS Analysis showed 37% of variance in games won can be predicted
by scoring accuracy. However, there was no significant relationship
Goal scoring efficiency in the Australian Football League (AFL) is considered Open and closed accuracy comparison;
between scoring accuracy and predicting team ranking (Table 1).
an important component in determining the outcome of a match. Despite this,
Analysis showed no significant difference between open play and closed play scoring accuracy
there have been few studies that have examined the factors associated with Table 1. Team rankings (most successful, least successful), total
(χ² (2) = 5.585, p = .061)(Table 1).
scoring in Australian football. This project will contribute to further developing shot accuracy, closed and open shot accuracy.
the area of goal scoring analysis in Australian football as there has been limited Proximity accuracy comparison;
research. Team Games %* Total Total Closed Open
Analysis showed a significant difference between the three distance zones and scoring accuracy Won Shots Shots Shot Shot
Shooting accuracy in Gaelic football was examined with results indicating that (χ² (4) = 35.175, p = .000)(Figure 2). Accuracy Accuracy Accuracy
winning teams achieved greater scoring accuracy in open play (1). Additionally, • 81% of shots from 0 – 20 metres were associated with scoring a goal (SR = 2.9).
a study measuring scoring efficiency in handball revealed winning teams • 52% of shots from > 40 metres were associated with scoring a goal (SR = 2.1).
Adelaide 3 178 102 41% 57% 55%
displayed greater scoring accuracy in open play and within 6 metres from goal
(2). A critical evaluation of previous research demonstrates that this type of Analysis showed a significant difference between the three angle zones and scoring accuracy Western Bulldogs 3 122 91 50% 52% 51%
analysis may provide a coach with valuable information in which to structure (χ² (4) = 70.814, p = .000)(Figure 2).
training and modify game tactics. • 63% of shots from the front zone were associated with scoring a goal (SR = 3.5). Sydney Swans 0 81 60 58% 66% 46%
• 38% of shots from the right zone were associated with scoring a goal (SR = 3.6).
Port Adelaide 0 76 69 60% 65% 28%
This research examines the factors related to scoring in the AFL utilising real • 42% of shots from the left zone were associated with scoring a goal (SR = 2.3).
Richmond 0 46 50 56% 52% 67%
time video analysis. The research objectives were as follows;
• Whether AFL players are more accurate at shooting in open or closed
playing conditions. 100%
Mean 111 79 53% 56% 50%
• How the proximity (distance and angle) from goal can influence a players
Accuracy 80% Total Shots
SD 33 15 0.1 0.1 0.1
• Whether scoring accuracy attributes to team ranking. 60% Closed
* % - For/Against Percentage
Over rounds 20, 21 and 22 of the 2009 AFL season, 24 games were analysed Performance analysis of scoring efficiency in Australian football
with each teams scoring attempt (N = 1228) coded according to the following 0% concluded that;
variables; • there is no significant difference between open and closed play
• Proximity (angle and distance of each attempted shot on goal) 0 - 20 20 - 40 >40 scoring efficiency and there is no significant difference between
• Shot type (closed or open) left and right zone shooting accuracy
• The result of the scoring attempt (goal, behind, no result)
a Distance (m) • the closer to goal and lesser the angle the higher the scoring
Analysis has compared scoring accuracy between open and closed playing efficiency for both closed and open shots
conditions as well as variances between the three scoring distances and angles • shooting efficiency does not directly predict team ranking or the
(Figure 1). Multiple regression analysis was utilised to establish the predictive
80% outcome of a match
power of the selected variables in relation to the outcome of a match.
60% Total Shots It appears that in order to improve scoring efficiency players must
increase shooting attempts from the central area in front of goal and
>40 m 40% Closed within 40 metres. It also appears that goal scoring accuracy does
20-40 m not necessarily predict a successful result or team ranking. The
Right Left 0-20 m Open successful teams had more total shots than the unsuccessful teams
20% and seemed to be a contributing factor for success.
0-20 m Left Right Right Front Left 1. McGuigan, K. (2008). Gaelic Performance: Advancing Gaelic
20-40 m Games Through Innovation. The University of Ulster.
>40 m b Angle
2. Vuleta, D., Milanovic, D. & Sertic, H. (2003). Journal of
Figure 1: Proximity zones according to distance (metres) and angle. Figure 2: Comparison between proximity and scoring accuracy; (a) distance (b) angle. Kinesiology, 35, 168-183.