Working with an experienced batter over the last couple of sessions on “timing”, and encouraging him to hit his drives even harder.

I have been suggesting that he tries delaying the downswing as long as he dares, to create greater bat speed at contact.

I came across an interesting paper that identified some of the key timings of “skilled” batters (see below) — significantly that better batters appear to more consistently coordinate the initiation of the bat downswing with the completion of the front-foot stride — but this image perhaps captures the delayed downswing better than any words could.

Hands still high, wrists cocked with the bat raised beyond the vertical, weight transferring dynamically into the stroke, as the front foot is just about to land.

Stepping out to drive
Maxine Blythin, Kent Women

In the interests of outcome-based coaching — the ball was hit through extra cover, on the deck, at a rate of knots!

The photo was taken last Sunday at the Vitality T20 round at County Beckenham.

I’d love to say that I had spotted the photo op and carefully set up the angle and the exposure to capture the moment, but the truth is that this was really a test shot, fired off as a short burst as I walked around the ground to find the best angles!

The data on coordination of movements when hitting a ball was reported in the following paper:

Sarpeshkar, V., Mann, D. L., Spratford, W., & Abernethy, B. (2017). The influence of ball-swing on the timing and coordination of a natural interceptive task. Human Movement Science54, 82-100.

Published by Andrew Beaven

Cricket coach, fascinated by the possibilities offered by the game. More formally - ECB level 2 cricket coach; ECB National Programmes (All Stars & Dynamos Cricket) Activator Tutor; Chance to Shine & Team Up (cricket) deliverer; ECB ACO umpire.

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