Cricket is a sport which is very popular in Britain and around the world. It involves a batsman using protective gear and a bat to hit a hard leather ball which is bowled by a bowler at up to 100 miles per hour. In this article I tell you how to make sure you select the right bat for you and make sure you can maximise your performance.
Probably the most crucial thing about buying your new cricket bat is how much it ways and whether it feels comfortable to you. If a player has a bat that is not the right weight it can really hamper the player's performance. The weight of a bat ranges from 1lb for the smallest juniors all the way up to 3lb for seniors. On average most seniors are happy with a weight around 2lb 8oz - 2lb 10oz.
However whatever the weight of the bat the pickup is crucial. The pickup is how light a bat is when you pick it up and how the weight is distributed on a bat. An example of this is some bats are bottom heavy meaning more weight is felt at the bottom of the bat. The pickup differs for every bat because no piece of willow is the same as another. The pickup is how the bat feels when you pick it up even very heavy bats can be made to have a light pickup and vice versa with light bats.The bat in height should go up to the players thighs in height allowing a comfortable stance. The pickup is determined by the shape of the bow of the bat and essentially determines the control the batsmen has over his blade.
The Bow and The Middle
Another thing you may like to look at is the bow of the bat this is how curved the bat is and determines where the middle is (the thickest part of the bat) and how high up it is on the face of the bat. If a bat has a low middle it is better for players who like to hit the ball out the park whilst high middles are for people who like to play more defensive.
Another way to recognise a good bat is the number of grains on the face and how straight the grains are. A rule of thumb is the more the grains the better and the straighter they are the better. A top class bat will have between 8-11 grains anymore are major bonuses. This tells us that if there are more grains it has been made from the prime bits of wood closer to the middle of the tree.
Type Of Willow
Another major thing to consider is the type of willow the bat is made of. There are two types of willow a bats can be made of either Kashmir or English. ALWAYS go for English willow Kashmir willow is a lot harder and the ball does not ping off the middle as much as I found out in past experience if you select English willow over Kashmir willow you will notice a massive difference in performance and batting really will feel a lot easier. English willow is graded from 1-5 judging the number of blemishes and the number of grains on a bat.
Another choice to make is whether to buy a major branded bat or a local one. personally I would say look at the quality of the bats. Often local shops offer custom made bats or a top of the range bats these bats tend are handmade and of a higher quality however these bats come with a huge price tag. Which is why I would recommend a well known bat make as they will be well tested so you can be guaranteed quality.
Final Words of Wisdom
Always try to go to the shop and feel the bat before you buy it also I would not buy bats from abroad due to lack of quality and whatever the price often it is a waste of money. Hopefully these criteria will help you choose a bat that is perfect for you and I wish you all the best and hope you score plenty of runs in the future. Please also look at my other article to find out how to prepare your new bat.