TIPS TO IMROVE YOUR BATTING
Having trouble with your batting? Don’t understand where you’re going wrong? Or want more variations. Here’s some simple tips that you can try to improve your batting.
Variations in grips can do miracles when you know what shots you want to play. It’s usually considered that the professionals have the perfect grip with regards to the V’s made by the thumbs and forefingers. But in reality that’s not very true. Grip can affect a lot and is responsible for the bat swing and let’s the batter play with full face of the bat and a proper grip allows you to play full range of shots. Usually we’re told to follow the V rule, but making some variations don’t hurt.
• Rounding the grip:
This grip allows you to open the full face of the bat. And it especially helps you play square drives with a full face. But this only works when you figure out the lengths and spots that the bowler is bowling. Usually a rounded grip is the one where the V of the bottom hand is rounded towards the point and it is usually used to play shots more towards the off side.
• Holding the bat closer to the bottom:
It gives you more control and helps you play stronger shots and generates greater bat speed. Since the bottom hand is dominant you don’t need a higher back lift to play stronger shots. But it has its downside too, it reduces reach and makes it uncomfortable to drive on the front foot.
Image Source: Pitch Vision
• Holding the bat closer to the top:
Using this grip increases the reach of the batter and players with this kind of grip are more comfortable playing shots on the front foot. But this kind of a grip does not generate much power and the batter has to rely on the downswing, and can be circumspect to quick short-pitched bowling.
Image Source: Pitch Vision
Stance can tell a lot about a batter. And bowlers usually look at a batters stance to exploit his/her weaknesses, therefore making it much more important to have variations in your stance.
• If you’re having problems playing shots on the leg side then it is considered that you have a “closed off” stance. Being closed off is another way of saying that the batter is too sideways when the player takes his/her stance. To solve this problem you should make sure that you have an open stance. It gives the batter a balanced position from which he or she has a wide range of scoring options. Batting with an open stance is when the batsman moves his front foot, or shoulder, or both more towards the leg side.
And if you’re having problems hitting the ball on the off side you can try the closed off stance.
• Standing outside the crease:
Moving out of your crease is an aggressive move that upsets the seam bowler’s length. A good length ball is now a half volley. A yorker is a full toss that you can dispatch anywhere on the park. It also makes LBW a lot harder to get. The tactic works especially well if you are a front foot player, or you are playing on a slow pitch that requires a lot of driving.
• Standing deep in the crease:
Standing with both feet inside the crease is also designed to put a bowler off his length as you can now play back to good length balls. It’s especially effective against spinners and slower medium paced bowlers; both of whom hate to get cut and pulled.
Of course you stand a greater risk of LBW, especially against quicker bowlers with the keeper up, so be careful on the pitch you choose. A slow, low one is not the best idea.
It’s also wise to watch your bat and feet as knocking your stumps over is a genuine risk
Although doing drills might seem like a waste of time but it actually contributes to a lot of your batting skills. Doing drills at least for half an hour can improve a lot, it perfects your movements and swings, also it makes you aware of what you are doing wrong. Ask a mate to record a video of you doing drills or your coach to keep an eye on you when you’re doing your drills and ask them to correct if you’re doing something wrong. Practice your shots by doing drills every time before you go to bat in the nets. And see the difference.
Below are the links to some videos that show great drills:
KNOW WHERE THE FIELDERS ARE AND TRY TO FIGURE OUT BOWLING STRATEGIES
Memorise where the fielders are and try to play according to the field placements and gaps. Adjust your stance and grip according to it. Look at the bowler and try to read what he is doing, even the run up can tell you a lot about the ball. Keep an eye on the point of release, the wrist, the position of the seam.
BELIEVE IN YOURSELF
You may feel like that your you’re not good enough. But having patience is the key. Believe in yourself and most of all practice your heart out.