Back in the summer, one of the teams I coached was having problems picking up singles and twos – their innings progressed by a succession of big hits and run outs – so we developed a game to practice shot placement and decision making.
I called it “run 1, run 2”, because that is what I kept calling out to the batsmen, but you might come up with a better name!
Try it, though – we found that the results were encouraging, and, as with many games, the tactical challenges were as interesting as the technical.
This game was modified from a fielding drill on Pitchvision.
Fielders (X) distributed on 4-6 stations, each ca. 20m from the pitch; coach starts the play by rolling or hitting the ball (1) towards a station; first fielder attacks the ball (2) and attempts to throw down the wicket (3), with fielders on the opposite side of the wicket backing up the throw (4), then attempting to throw to the other wicket (5). To score a point, the fielding team need to (a) score a direct hit from either throw or (b) get the ball back to the second wicket before a batsman completes two runs.
We then introduced a batsman, to give the game I called “run one, run two” (r1r2).
Fielders “in the ring” as before, but with a batsman hitting the ball into gaps (we put a limit on how far they can hit the ball – perhaps no more than 10 m beyond fielding ring – to prevent too many long, futile chases for the fielding team) before attempting to run two. The fielders stop runs by achieving run outs at both ends; the batter scores all completed runs.
The batsman starts with (self or coach) drop feed (focus on placement of strokes) then progresses to bobble feed (more representative of game play) from coach and/or co-operative bowling (by partner).