A defensive cricketer will look to occupy the crease for as long as they possibly can. Think of someone like Alistair Cook. He amassed record-breaking amounts of runs opening for England, but you wouldn’t say he was an attacking player. He was happy to bide his time and defend the new ball while he waited for the bad deliveries to put away.
Some people think of this type of player as a dying breed, but for opening the innings, or providing some staying power at the low end of the batting order, a defensive player can be gold dust for your team.
What are the criteria that make the best cricket bat for a defensive player?
In this guide, we’re looking at some of the top methods of choosing a bat to defend and protect your wicket at all costs.
The bat weight you opt for can be one of the most important criteria for buying a bat. If you are a defensive player, then a heavy bat probably won’t be the best choice for you.
Heavy bats are good for big-hitting. If you’re a powerful player who picks up the flight of the ball early then a heavy bat can give the extra power needed to clear the fence for six. However, heavier bats are big and cumbersome. They don’t give you the flexibility of a lightweight or average weight bat.
The average weight for a bat is 2lb 9oz. The Village Cricket bat weighs…2lb 9oz. It gives you the best of both worlds. The weight is low enough that the bat is still flexible, and lets you play the ball late as a good defensive player should. However, the curvature of the bat, and considerable “sweet spot” means you can hit big shots if you need to as well.
This can be achieved via the bat grip itself or the way you hold the bat. Most people find that a low grip is the best way to get accuracy and make sure that the ball is hitting the middle of the bat more often than not. Gripping low on the handle, closer to the blade itself, means that you can play late with a lot of accuracy.
How a bat is curved is another thing that divides opinion among cricketers. It’s a matter of personal preference.
However, a decent curvature on the bat can make it easier to play difficult shots and to reach tough angles. In modern cricket, it’s good for any player to have a 360 shot repertoire, and that is the same whether you are defensive or attacking in mindset.
A curved bat can give you the flexibility to pick out the quick singles that you might not have found otherwise, and keep rotating the strike (or get the attacking batsman on strike).
The type of wood you use is an important decision, too. This is true whether you are a defensive or attacking cricketer. A good bat will last longer and resist warping or damage that might make you more likely to nick off to slip.
The Village Cricket Bat uses Salix Alba willow, which is actually far more affordable than English willow, but still does an exceptional job. Even if you are on a budget there is no excuse for poor quality wood. Salix Alba has been used by professionals for decades.
The Village Cricket Bat – The Best Bat For Defensive Players Under £100
The Village Cricket Co. set out to make a bat that could give village cricketers the benefits of a high-end bat without the price tag. By not chasing professionals for endorsements, and by using sturdy but affordable Salix Alba willow, the price could be lowered significantly. No need to spend £400 on a bat just to try and steal a few singles or bat time in the lower order.
What makes this bat great for defensive players?
Low middle – the low middle is designed with English conditions in mind. A lot of village cricket pitches have a slow and low bounce. By having a low middle, the Village Cricket Bat helps you to make good contact with more deliveries and not get caught out by the one that stays low.
It’s standard weight – 2lb 9oz is ideal for defensive players. It means you can adjust to play defensive shots late, but you can still slog if you need to.
Pre-knocked in – knocking in a cricket bat is a long and boring process. You don’t want to have to knock your bat in when it arrives, you want to take to the pitch or the nets and start hitting some balls.
Designed to last – some cricket bats can break easily if you don’t look after them. Salix Alba willow has been tested to a high degree and shows that it is a fantastic, long-lasting option for cricketers of all types. This bat won’t be a one-season wonder. It is designed to last for many years.
There are no secrets to the way the Village Cricket Co. operates. By not spending money on professional endorsements, and by using robust willow from outside of England, the savings can be passed on to the customers, but the bat quality remains the same.
The average village cricketer doesn’t want to spend hundreds of pounds on a bat to use on the weekends. In the modern age, you don’t have to. Many of these bats are expensive because of the fact that professionals in the BBL and international cricket use them.
The Village Cricket Co. gives you an option for a budget bat, perfect for keeping in the club kitbag or treasuring as your main bat. It will last many years, and is a great choice for defensive players, being curved, flexible and lightweight, helping you to steal the odd single or play endless forward defensives on a Saturday afternoon.