Skip to main content
Your browser is not up to date. We encourage you to change or update your browser to ensure the best possible experience on our site.

Australasia's Best Sporting Team

Powered by GAIN LINE Analytics

What makes a winning team?

Concept Overview

Australasia’s Best Sporting Team was designed to bring an analytical approach to answering questions like whether great historic teams could have survived in today’s competitions, or about which football code is the best of all. In doing so it aims to start a new conversation about greatness. The aim is to reward success, whilst unearthing some hidden gems and most importantly, helping those in need.

The concept appealed to Platinum given the body of work we have done with GAIN LINE on our own team cohesion

In 2018, Platinum Asset Management, in conjunction with GAIN LINE Analytics, conducted a huge statistical analysis of 14 sports over 25 years and determined that the Crusaders rugby team, based in Christchurch, New Zealand were Australasia’s Best Sporting Team over that period.

ABST Annual Award

Since 2019, Platinum has presented an annual award to the team that is at the top of its game, achieving the best outcome over the most recent rolling 5-year period. The basic principles are the same, but reflect excellence over shorter, yet still meaningful, periods. The goal continues to be to help those in need, whilst recognising success.

The annual award recognises the evolving sporting landscape, the emergence of new competitions, and the rise of women’s sport. During 2019, Platinum was pleased to be involved in the FPA’s Women in Wealth initiative, presenting Giants Netball superstars, Caitlin Bassett (Australian captain) and Jo Harten (England) to advisers around Australia.

Top 25

ABST originally started as a research project at GAIN LINE Analytics in trying to decipher what a truly successful team could be defined as. The inaugural award was presented to the best franchise of the last 25 years in line with the tenure of Platinum, GAIN LINE Analytics research partner. The annual award recognises the strongest franchise on a rolling five-year period.

Understanding the size and variety of the sporting landscape in Australia gives some idea of the complexity of determining the best team.

Ranking 2019 Rank Team Name Competition Country/State ABT Score
1 1 Melbourne Storm NRL VIC 3.24
2 2 Crusaders Super Rugby NZ 3.21
3 4 Sydney FC A-League NSW 2.71
4 3 New South Wales Breakers WNCL NSW 2.65
5 7 Richmond Tigers AFL VIC 2.61
6 - Melbourne City W-League VIC 2.46
7 16 Geelong Cats AFL VIC 2.25
8 - UNSW Wests Magpies NWPL NSW 2.13
9 9 CBR Brave AIHL ACT 2.05
10 13 Perth Wildcats NBL WA 1.98
11 - Chiefs Esports Club OPL NSW 1.97
12 10 Sydney University Lions NWPL NSW 1.91
13 - Brisbane Heat WBBL QLD 1.91
14 6 Victoria Sheffield Shield VIC 1.85
15 - Melbourne Vixens Netball VIC 1.82
16 21 Sydney Sirens AWIHL NSW 1.80
17 11 West Coast Eagles AFL WA 1.79
18 5 Hurricanes Super Rugby NZ 1.76
19 8 Sydney Roosters NRL NSW 1.75
20 - Penrith Panthers NRL NSW 1.73
21 - Drummoyne Devils NWPL NSW 1.58
22 - Sydney Sixers BBL NSW 1.54
23 14 Brisbane Bandits ABL QLD 1.52
24 18 Sydney FC W-League NSW 1.52
25 - New South Wales Sheffield Shield NSW 1.46
  • Male
  • Female


As part of the Australasia’s Best Sporting Team and the team cohesion work between Platinum Asset Management and GAIN LINE Analytics, Platinum will award A$10,000 to this year’s winning team to donate to a worthwhile cause of their choice.

$10,000 Grant

The club has chosen to support the Starlight Children's Foundation, an Australian charity dedicated to brightening the lives of sick kids. In creating over half a million Starlight Experiences each year, they make a positive impact through bringing fun, joy and laughter to help sick children.

Australasia’s Best Sporting Team 2020


Melbourne Storm came into existence in 1998 as part of the newly formed National Rugby League competition.

The Club was the first ever professional Victorian rugby league club and spent little time stamping their mark, winning their maiden premiership in just their second year.

Storm have played in a total of ten grand finals during their 23-year history, missing the finals on just three occasions.

The Club has built itself on the values of family, accountability, hard work, respect and passion. It is these values that drive Melbourne Storm to succeed each and every year, both on and off the field.


The period of observation for the 2020 award is 2016-2020. Every game in every sport in Australasia that conducts an ongoing home/away or equivalent competition that included Australian teams has been analysed subject to the competition meeting specific criteria. More than 8,000 individual match results are in the dataset.

To be considered for the Best Team award a team must have played in each of the last 5 seasons. For each team in the competition, their win/loss record is looked at season by season, along with their position within the competition. More recent years are weighted more highly, as is the win-loss record, over the position. This recognises consistency over seasons as opposed to the one-off nature of finals.

For each of these measures, a Z-Score is created to show the relative raw performance within competitions and to enable comparison across all the competitions.

An adjustment is applied to reflect the stability of the competition over the last 10 years, This places the raw performance output in context - stable competitions being harder to perform well in consistently because of the impact that player trading cycles have on competitiveness.

Eligible teams, of which there are 152 are then ranked on their adjusted Z-Scores, to provide the definitive list of Australasia’s Best Sporting Teams over the period. This website contains the Top 25 overall, Top 3 by sport and Top 3 by state/country.

To be the best team in a sport over a prolonged period requires dedication, endurance, excellence and cohesion. To be the best overall, is a step beyond.

Top 3 by sport


Perth Wildcats
Melbourne United
Southside Flyers


New South Wales Breakers
Brisbane Heat (female)

Water Polo

UNSW Wests Magpies
Sydney University Lions (male)
Drummoyne Devils (male)


Richmond Tigers
Geelong Cats
West Coast Eagles

Ice Hockey

CBR Brave
Sydney Sirens
Melbourne Ice (female)


Sydney FC (male)
Melbourne City (female)
Sydney FC (female)


Melbourne Vixens
NSW Swifts
West Coast Fever

Rugby League

Melbourne Storm
Sydney Roosters
Penrith Panthers

Rugby Union



Brisbane Bandits
Melbourne Aces
Perth Heat


Chiefs Esports Club
Legacy Esports
Dire Wolves

Top 3 by region


CBR Brave Ice Hockey
Brumbies Super Rugby
Canberra Raiders Rugby League


Sydney FC (Male) Soccer
New South Wales Breakers Cricket
UNSW Wests Magpies Water Polo


Crusaders Super Rugby
Hurricanes Super Rugby
Highlanders Super Rugby


Brisbane Heat (female) Cricket
Brisbane Bandits Baseball
Brisbane Roar (female) Soccer


Port Adelaide AFL
Adelaide Strikers Cricket
Adelaide Bite Baseball


Melbourne Storm Rugby League
Richmond Tigers AFL
Melbourne City (female) Soccer


Perth Wildcats Basketball
West Coast Eagles AFL
Perth Thunder Cricket


Hobart Hurricanes Cricket
Tasmania (Sheffield Shield) Cricket
Tasmanian Roar Cricket
  • Male
  • Female

The following leagues were considered. They all currently exist and have done continuously for at least five years in a full league format (as opposed to carnival). They are stipulated to be the top tier in Australian sport.

  • AFL: Men’s Australian Football League
  • NWWPL: National Women’s Water Polo League
  • NWPL: National Water Polo League (Men’s)
  • WNCL: Women’s National Cricket League
  • AWIHL: Women’s Ice Hockey
  • AIHL: Men’s Ice Hockey
  • W-League: Women’s Football (Soccer)
  • A League: Men’s Football (Soccer)
  • WNBL: Women’s National Basketball League
  • Netball: Women’s Netball League
  • NBL: Men’s Basketball
  • Sheffield Shield: Men’s Long form Cricket
  • Super Rugby: Men’s Rugby International Provincial Competition
  • NRL: National Rugby League
  • ABL: Australian Baseball League (Men’s)
  • BBL: Men’s Big Bash Cricket
  • WBBL: Women’s Big Bash Cricket
  • OPL: Oceanic Pro League

Those in red did not qualify for the 25 year study in 2018.

Any teams based in NZ that have played in Australian based leagues (including Super Rugby) have been included as we felt it would be deemed unfair to discount the records of the NZ Breakers, NZ/Auckland Warriors and NZ Based Super Rugby Teams amongst others. This made it an Australasian based list, and indeed, the winner of the 25-year award in 2018, was the NZ based Crusaders.

The top 25 in 2020 contains 16 of the 18 competitions analysed and there are six women’s teams in this list of top performers. We expect this number will rise over time as the tenure stipulation has been a challenge with women’s sport exploding in recent years. There are currently 64 female franchises in our survey (50 meeting the qualifying criteria) and 117 men’s (97 qualify). The WNBL has the teams with the longest tenure in women’s sport. In 2020, the AIHL (Men's Ice Hockey) was cancelled due to COVID-19 so those teams' 2019 scores were frozen.

  1. The Melbourne Storm have been very consistent in recent years and another great season, led to very little change in their total versus last year.
  2. The Crusaders had another successful year finishing on top of the Super Rugby Aotearoa ladder, leading to their fourth title in a row, and increasing their score versus 2019. Their weaker 2016 season will drop out of ABST 2021.
  3. Sydney FC won their third title in four years, increasing their score versus 2019. Their weaker 2015/6 season will drop out of ABST 2021.
  4. NSW Breakers were runners-up this year, after winning three titles in a row, and slipped back a little in the ABST rankings as a result.
  5. Richmond won their third premiership in four years, boosting their score versus 2019. Their weaker 2016 season will drop out of ABST 2021.

Results based on all competitions completed by 15 November 2020.

More Information

Australia's Best Sporting Team

Get Platinum's Latest
News & Insights

Connect to
GAIN LINE Analytics

Game changing analytics