Changing Bats – Does it make that much of a difference?
As a park cricketer – I often spend hours online looking at the amount of bats available – whether it be a kahuna, ghost or surge – I’ve always wondered how much of a difference changing a bat can make to my game, but more so – how it can impact a professional player.
There are many famous stories of golfers changing sponsors, which results in them having to change equipment – which has lead to some famous slides down the world golf rankings. In cricket, we are a bit luckier that most times, the shape, face and all the other important pieces of the bat can be crafted by hand to meet an individual players’ requirements. But – how much does it actually make a difference to a player using a different bat. Is it purely mental, or is there something else at play here.
During a recent filming session with SkyTV in New Zealand – where we put the Stancebeam Striker powered by Kookaburra Cricket through its paces with the Auckland Aces – we decided to test this out. Using the StanceBeam Striker, as the measuring tool – we decided to mix things up a little bit and play a game of pass the bat around. We took the Players bat’s out of their bags, added the StanceBeam Striker Smart Cricket Bat Sensor to each of them – and then had the players enter the nets with one of their team mates bats. Using the StanceBeam App on our mobile device – we kept an eye on the player’s shot efficiency scores – which gives us an overview of how well each player is timing the ball – tracking their max bat speed against their speed at point of impact – as well as watching their power outputs, exactly the power that is being generated by each shot player by the Ace’s players.
The answer to the question that has been on my mind for a long was finally answered – using someone else’s bat made a huge difference. We noticed that a player who would always time the ball to perfection was suddenly producing a much lower score, resulting in a shot that wasn’t as well timed. The power being generated off the bat again was reduced. Even the bat speed being generated was lower, or even higher depending on how the weight of the bat differed to their own.
Watching the players get a hold of their own bats again – not only did it return smiles on their faces – but seeing those perfect shots again in terms of timing, huge power scores and techniques worthy of the highlight reel- made me stop and think – possibly it’s not my talent that’s been letting me down – it’s my bat. To keep everyone up to date – I’m currently very eagerly awaiting delivery of a new Kookaburra Patriot Pro Players from Greg Chappell Cricket Centre to arrive at my doorstep via Australia Post. I’ll let you all into the results in our next episode.