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  1. #1
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    How to play ball along the ground instead of hitting it in the air

    In some patchy form atm, but the main concern is that whenever I play a shot in my past few innings it goes above the ground, not a skier, quite a few inches above the ground though and straight into the fielder's hands.

    Last 2 times I tried to play a cover drive it went in the air instead of along the ground and got caught both times. Similar dismissals before.

    Thought I was playing the ball too early, but if I play too late vs pacers I get bowled

    Some advice bros

  2. #2
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    Honestly, it's impossible to say what the problem without seeing you batting with our own eyes.

    Having said that though, as a general rule if you get your weight forward and your head over the ball then you will find it easier to drive the ball along the ground.

  3. #3
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    As Big Mac said, it's difficult to say without a video.

    But you're most likely relying on your bottom hand heavily using it as the guide hand. Here are a few tips:

    - Head still, even the slightest movement can make you err in judging line and length which is often the reason batsmen either play too early or too late
    - pick up the length from release and not off the pitch
    - transfer your weight forward or back as soon as you pick it up
    - Play the ball right under your eyes and choose the right ball, not every ball can played along the ground. Some you have to defend or pull/hook or leave.
    - Keep your elbow high(key to playing shots on the ground)
    - Use your top hand as the guide and not the bottom
    - Keep your mind sharp and learn to turn it on before delivery and turn it off after delivery. A relaxed mind will allow you to execute better

    Good luck.
    Last edited by ChachaCricket; 8th December 2015 at 16:10.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Mac View Post
    Honestly, it's impossible to say what the problem without seeing you batting with our own eyes.

    Having said that though, as a general rule if you get your weight forward and your head over the ball then you will find it easier to drive the ball along the ground.

    Quote Originally Posted by ChachaCricket View Post
    As Big Mac said, it's difficult to say without a video.

    But you're most likely relying on your bottom hand heavily using it as the guide hand. Here are a few tips:

    - Head still, even the slightest movement can make you err in judging line and length which is often the reason batsmen either play too early or too late
    - pick up the length from release and not off the pitch
    - transfer your weight forward or back as soon as you pick it up
    - Play the ball right under your eyes and choose the right ball, not every ball can played along the ground. Some you have to defend or pull/hook or leave.
    - Keep your elbow high(key to playing shots on the ground)
    - Use your top hand as the guide and not the bottom
    - Keep your mind sharp and learn to turn it on before delivery and turn it off after delivery. A relaxed mind will allow you to execute better

    Good luck.
    Thanks for the advice so far guys. Reviewed these tips before the match today, made a 44, then got run out

    I tried to get my camera in the field but it wasn't allowed, but I know what my dismissals usually look like so I'll try to find a similar video on youtube and try post that.

    ChachaCricket, the bolded part is probably the thing I have the most difficulty with, with spinners it's easy because their grips can be drastically different, and if you have the bad habit like me of playing it off the pitch rather than reading it from the hand, it gets very tough vs pacers.

    Playing is Pakistan I could use a low backlift and not bother reading the line and length early and get away with it. In the US it is very different with some of these American beef fed pacers being tough to negotiate.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suleiman View Post
    Thanks for the advice so far guys. Reviewed these tips before the match today, made a 44, then got run out

    I tried to get my camera in the field but it wasn't allowed, but I know what my dismissals usually look like so I'll try to find a similar video on youtube and try post that.

    ChachaCricket, the bolded part is probably the thing I have the most difficulty with, with spinners it's easy because their grips can be drastically different, and if you have the bad habit like me of playing it off the pitch rather than reading it from the hand, it gets very tough vs pacers.


    Playing is Pakistan I could use a low backlift and not bother reading the line and length early and get away with it. In the US it is very different with some of these American beef fed pacers being tough to negotiate.
    Glad I could help.

    Picking up length from the hand can be tricky in the first over as bowlers are of different stature and some have uniquely different actions. So the first few balls/overs are where you have to concentrate until you've gotten used to their actions.

    The basics are to keep your eye on the ball once you sight it in the bowler's hand and judge from the release point. The later/lower the ball is released the shorter it will be and the higher/earlier it is released the more fuller it will be. Some bowlers have really high arm and upright actions(like Ambrose, Wasim, McGrath) therefore very deceptive in their lengths, identify bowlers with such actions who don't lose much height in delivery stride and don't need to bend their back much. You need to concentrate much harder against them and it generally takes 3-4 overs to get used to their lengths.

    Keeping your head absolutely is a must throughout this process while having good balance. Think of yourself as a boxer(quick on your feet) ready to go forward or back quickly and the bat is just an extension of your arm.

    Again, keep your mind sharp. Doing this every ball can be mentally draining so learn to switch your mind on before delivery and off after delivery. Think about whatever, it doesn't matter.

    Once you repeat this process continually, it will become second nature. But like every batsman you will lose form/touch, in that case these are the basics to fall back on.

    As for American beef fed pacers(lol), I cannot speak for Karachi but the bowlers in Lahore/Punjab are much faster.

    Regarding the video, it doesn't have to be a game video, you can record yourself in the nets.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suleiman View Post
    Thanks for the advice so far guys. Reviewed these tips before the match today, made a 44, then got run out

    I tried to get my camera in the field but it wasn't allowed, but I know what my dismissals usually look like so I'll try to find a similar video on youtube and try post that.

    ChachaCricket, the bolded part is probably the thing I have the most difficulty with, with spinners it's easy because their grips can be drastically different, and if you have the bad habit like me of playing it off the pitch rather than reading it from the hand, it gets very tough vs pacers.

    Playing is Pakistan I could use a low backlift and not bother reading the line and length early and get away with it. In the US it is very different with some of these American beef fed pacers being tough to negotiate.
    I don't know how fast they are bowling, but soon as you starts climbing rankings and face quicker bowlers, you will never survive without reading the ball of the hand/release. That is a poor way to bat. Better fix now than later.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChachaCricket View Post
    Glad I could help.

    Picking up length from the hand can be tricky in the first over as bowlers are of different stature and some have uniquely different actions. So the first few balls/overs are where you have to concentrate until you've gotten used to their actions.

    The basics are to keep your eye on the ball once you sight it in the bowler's hand and judge from the release point. The later/lower the ball is released the shorter it will be and the higher/earlier it is released the more fuller it will be. Some bowlers have really high arm and upright actions(like Ambrose, Wasim, McGrath) therefore very deceptive in their lengths, identify bowlers with such actions who don't lose much height in delivery stride and don't need to bend their back much. You need to concentrate much harder against them and it generally takes 3-4 overs to get used to their lengths.

    Keeping your head absolutely is a must throughout this process while having good balance. Think of yourself as a boxer(quick on your feet) ready to go forward or back quickly and the bat is just an extension of your arm.

    Again, keep your mind sharp. Doing this every ball can be mentally draining so learn to switch your mind on before delivery and off after delivery. Think about whatever, it doesn't matter.

    Once you repeat this process continually, it will become second nature. But like every batsman you will lose form/touch, in that case these are the basics to fall back on.

    As for American beef fed pacers(lol), I cannot speak for Karachi but the bowlers in Lahore/Punjab are much faster.

    Regarding the video, it doesn't have to be a game video, you can record yourself in the nets.
    Thanks again, practiced a bit on my own and asked the coach about the problem, and one good tip he said was to keep the elbow pointed down at the delivery when you lean in with your shoulder and head for the stroke, and that has helped, when I put a conscious effort to keep my elbow angled. Guess my elbow was too straight at the point of executing the stroke which caused me to hit in the air. As for picking the length he says there's no solution, you just gotta keep facing bowlers. I'll try the switching the mind off trick, think that's kinda nifty since I try to concentrate throughout the innings and then lose it and go for a big hit

    Quote Originally Posted by Thivagar View Post
    I don't know how fast they are bowling, but soon as you starts climbing rankings and face quicker bowlers, you will never survive without reading the ball of the hand/release. That is a poor way to bat. Better fix now than later.
    There's quite a few trundlers over here (probably 120-127 kph), but some know how to swing in which case I play maidens and the typical 1-0-0-0-0-0 Pakistani batsman over.

    There's one dude who was like the 7th or 8th best batsman last season yet he also bowls very fast, probably hovering around early to mid 130s. Yeah that might still be trundling for international batsman, but man it feels fast af. Luckily I faced him only for a few deliveries, otherwise I'd be toast

    I'll try to get some throwdowns to practice picking the length, there really is no other way.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suleiman View Post
    Thanks again, practiced a bit on my own and asked the coach about the problem, and one good tip he said was to keep the elbow pointed down at the delivery when you lean in with your shoulder and head for the stroke, and that has helped, when I put a conscious effort to keep my elbow angled. Guess my elbow was too straight at the point of executing the stroke which caused me to hit in the air. As for picking the length he says there's no solution, you just gotta keep facing bowlers. I'll try the switching the mind off trick, think that's kinda nifty since I try to concentrate throughout the innings and then lose it and go for a big hit



    There's quite a few trundlers over here (probably 120-127 kph), but some know how to swing in which case I play maidens and the typical 1-0-0-0-0-0 Pakistani batsman over.

    There's one dude who was like the 7th or 8th best batsman last season yet he also bowls very fast, probably hovering around early to mid 130s. Yeah that might still be trundling for international batsman, but man it feels fast af. Luckily I faced him only for a few deliveries, otherwise I'd be toast

    I'll try to get some throwdowns to practice picking the length, there really is no other way.
    Post a video if you can. Don't want to complicate things without understanding the problem first.

    Regarding the conscious effort to keep the elbow down, it is not necessary and can actually get you in trouble if the bowler surprises with a bouncer. Rather make a conscious effort to play the ball late. Sharpen your mind and think as if you've got all the time in the world. Everything will slow down.

    Once you've picked up the length and gotten your weight forward(for the fuller length), let the ball come to you and play it right under your eyes, present full face of the bat and just guide the ball. Do not reach for the ball(this is when you will either nick or pop up the ball), rather than using your bat swing to create momentum, use the pace of the ball to guide it by opening or closing the face of the bat at the last second.

    Another problem could be that your backlift is not high enough which means you get through your shot earlier therefore when the ball meets the bat, the trajectory of the bat is upwards as opposed to with a higher backlift you'd connect the ball much later with the bat facing downwards.

    I know I've repeated a couple of things but these are necessary as they are the foundations on which strokeplay is built upon.
    Last edited by ChachaCricket; 14th December 2015 at 00:18.

  9. #9
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    The general rule is to keep the head and elbow pointing down before and at the point of contact.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by patrickackerman View Post
    The general rule is to keep the head and elbow pointing down before and at the point of contact.
    Kind of impossible to play the ball on the ground with the elbow and head pointing anywhere else but down.

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    One thing I'd add that will help is where you grip the bat, if you grip it higher up the handle then you will have greater power but at the expense of control which can cause some strokes to go aerial when not intended to; a grip near the splice of the bat (bottom of the handle) gives you greater control over your shots and that might be what you need.


    Politics trumps intelligence (pun intended).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Haroon786 View Post
    One thing I'd add that will help is where you grip the bat, if you grip it higher up the handle then you will have greater power but at the expense of control which can cause some strokes to go aerial when not intended to; a grip near the splice of the bat (bottom of the handle) gives you greater control over your shots and that might be what you need.
    I always thought that worked the other way around, top handle for stroke and bottom for splice!!

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by MianDaddy View Post
    I always thought that worked the other way around, top handle for stroke and bottom for splice!!
    No; there is also an intermediate between the high grip and the low grip and that is to have one hand near the splice and one near the top of the handle - which leaves a gap between the two hands. Not sure what this does in terms of batting flexibility, but a guess would be that it probably offers a mixture of power and safety.


    Politics trumps intelligence (pun intended).

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by patrickackerman View Post
    The general rule is to keep the head and elbow pointing down before and at the point of contact.
    Yeah I've mentioned this above too, that's what I've been following, I lead with my head and front shoulder else I would lunge at the ball with my whole body. But now I'm struggling with a short ball issue ala , which is ironic because I have a good pullshot with the nice twirl in the follow through and all, but the short balls catch me off guard and I lob it in the air on occassion.

    Quote Originally Posted by Haroon786 View Post
    One thing I'd add that will help is where you grip the bat, if you grip it higher up the handle then you will have greater power but at the expense of control which can cause some strokes to go aerial when not intended to; a grip near the splice of the bat (bottom of the handle) gives you greater control over your shots and that might be what you need.
    Yeah adjusted this about a year ago. Not only that, but the bat handle kept hitting my wrist which became painful after it constantly kept hitting the same area because my grip was too high. Readjusted that by making sure my fingers formed a "V" and held the bat a little lower down, helped with control a lot. Also important was making sure my top hand was the driving force and the bottom hand just as a guide, whereas initially I was very bottom handed.

    So yeah been changing a lot of things after collecting a lot of bad habits when I used to play back in Pak/Qatar.

    Also I choke too much nearing 50, typical pak batsman problems LOL
    Last edited by Suleiman; 8th February 2016 at 00:48.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suleiman View Post
    Yeah I've mentioned this above too, that's what I've been following, I lead with my head and front shoulder else I would lunge at the ball with my whole body. But now I'm struggling with a short ball issue ala , which is ironic because I have a good pullshot with the nice twirl in the follow through and all, but the short balls catch me off guard and I lob it in the air on occassion.
    Bro, did I not tell you that this would happen?

    Regarding the conscious effort to keep the elbow down, it is not necessary and can actually get you in trouble if the bowler surprises with a bouncer.
    Making a conscious effort to keep the elbow down will always get you in a tangle against the short ball.

    What you need to do is get deeper in your crease to give yourself more time, increase your bat lift so you connect the ball on a downward trajectory and allow the ball to come to you and then lunge forward.

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    ^Adding on, what I mean by allow the ball to come to you is don't pre-plant your front foot before delivery, your front has to move to either move forward or back(depending on length) in synchronization with the ball being delivered.

    Planting your front foot early makes it difficult to time the ball on the rise.
    Last edited by ChachaCricket; 8th February 2016 at 22:22.

  17. #17
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    *makes it difficult to play a rising ball on the ground.

  18. #18
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    @Suleiman if you're gonna make a conscious effort then make a conscious effort to keep the elbow high instead of pointing it down.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by ChachaCricket View Post
    @Suleiman if you're gonna make a conscious effort then make a conscious effort to keep the elbow high instead of pointing it down.
    I think I sent the wrong message by saying the elbow thing.

    What I meant to say is, I lead with my front shoulder and head, before playing on the front foot or back foot. It's like a trigger movement.

    When the ball is short, I initially lean in a little with my shoulder and head, but once I've gauged the line and length at the point of release I shift my weight to the back foot and go from there.

    The problem I think, what you said earlier, is being too far out the crease, which now I think about it, might be true.

    Though I will admit I have a fear of getting hit in the face in sports lol. It is a childhood fear of sorts, because when I was 6 and was goalkeeper, football hit me hard in the eye. Eventually stopped keeping, but whenever I do, I still have that fear of the ball hitting me in the face preventing me from coming out of the net and attacking the ball.

    Same thing in basketball whenever I am under the net, I can't fend off layups properly with the fear of the ball going through the net and hitting me in the head.

    Maybe I will get someone to throw soft balls towards my head. All out beamers, and I will just stand there like a mard and take the hits to cope with this fear. Then move onto tennis balls.

    Won't move onto cricket balls after that because I value my upper body

  20. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suleiman View Post
    I think I sent the wrong message by saying the elbow thing.

    What I meant to say is, I lead with my front shoulder and head, before playing on the front foot or back foot. It's like a trigger movement.

    When the ball is short, I initially lean in a little with my shoulder and head, but once I've gauged the line and length at the point of release I shift my weight to the back foot and go from there.

    The problem I think, what you said earlier, is being too far out the crease, which now I think about it, might be true.

    Though I will admit I have a fear of getting hit in the face in sports lol. It is a childhood fear of sorts, because when I was 6 and was goalkeeper, football hit me hard in the eye. Eventually stopped keeping, but whenever I do, I still have that fear of the ball hitting me in the face preventing me from coming out of the net and attacking the ball.

    Same thing in basketball whenever I am under the net, I can't fend off layups properly with the fear of the ball going through the net and hitting me in the head.

    Maybe I will get someone to throw soft balls towards my head. All out beamers, and I will just stand there like a mard and take the hits to cope with this fear. Then move onto tennis balls.

    Won't move onto cricket balls after that because I value my upper body
    Is your stance a stand still position or do you have a trigger movement? How high is your back-lift?

    If you don't have foot speed then I suggest you either step into your stance to create momentum in your legs or a little back and across movement to get deeper in your crease. The obvious but slight adjustment is that the length for full pitched deliveries becomes fuller therefore make a conscious effort to lunge forward on full pitched deliveries because you don't want to get beaten on length.

    You previously mentioned that when you started waiting for the ball, it kept beating you. The simple solution is what's mentioned above, a simple back and across trigger movement a la Amla or De Villiers to give yourself more time.

    I would also suggest that you raise your back-lift as you'll be playing the ball later so even if it's on the rise your bat will always meet the ball on a downward trajectory.

    These changes don't have to be exaggerated, the trigger movement is just a little shuffle and raise the back-lift to whatever extent you're comfortable with.

    Regarding your lean forward to gauge the length, make sure your elbow stays high(to whatever extent you're comfortable) at all times and does not point down. Otherwise you will struggle to get on top of the rising delivery as first you'd have to raise your elbow(time wasted) and then execute the shot. You'll always be late. Everything's faster down hill.

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    Stop confusing the poor guy.

    Keep it simple, get your head over the ball/hit the ball underneath your eyes.

    http://www.foddy.net/Cricket.html

    If you do that then you can't hit the ball up in the air, even if you're playing silly browser games.

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    Can't say much without looking but main point will be transfer of weight and playing the ball under your head and eyes as far as possible.


    If you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you always got #improve

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Mac View Post
    Stop confusing the poor guy.

    Keep it simple, get your head over the ball/hit the ball underneath your eyes.

    http://www.foddy.net/Cricket.html

    If you do that then you can't hit the ball up in the air, even if you're playing silly browser games.
    Quote Originally Posted by Abdullah View Post
    Can't say much without looking but main point will be transfer of weight and playing the ball under your head and eyes as far as possible.
    He already knows this.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChachaCricket View Post
    He already knows this.
    Ok didn't read through thread and gave my 2pennyworth


    If you always do what you have always done, you will always get what you always got #improve

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    Quote Originally Posted by ChachaCricket View Post
    He already knows this.
    That's all he needs to know.

    All this stuff about elbows, trigger movements, shuffles, backlifts etc. is pointless clutter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Mac View Post
    That's all he needs to know.

    All this stuff about elbows, trigger movements, shuffles, backlifts etc. is pointless clutter.
    Nope, they're all very important and applied by every great batsman. If you don't understand them, then that's another matter.

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    You have no idea what his stance/backlift/grip/technique is like and you're giving him a shopping list of different things to think about and tinker with, which is extremely counter productive.

    At the same time as you're bombarding him with all these changes and suggestions you're telling him to relax and keep his mind clear, which he can't do if he's thinking about the direction his back foot is going in, whether his elbow is pointing up or down and whether his socks match his horoscope for today.

    Every batsman has different trigger movements, back lift, grip, stance. Giving the OP detailed instructions when you have zero idea what his current batting looks like is not helpful at all, keep it simple.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Mac View Post
    You have no idea what his stance/backlift/grip/technique is like and you're giving him a shopping list of different things to think about and tinker with, which is extremely counter productive.

    At the same time as you're bombarding him with all these changes and suggestions you're telling him to relax and keep his mind clear, which he can't do if he's thinking about the direction his back foot is going in, whether his elbow is pointing up or down and whether his socks match his horoscope for today.

    Every batsman has different trigger movements, back lift, grip, stance. Giving the OP detailed instructions when you have zero idea what his current batting looks like is not helpful at all, keep it simple.
    I haven't even gotten into the specifics and I wouldn't do that without seeing a video of him bat, these are the very basics. He doesn't have to apply them if he doesn't feel comfortable. Just giving him general tips which are easily understood by everyone and I know Suleiman is pretty knowledgeable.

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    Okay guys, been a few months. Have gotten a higher backlift now, one question I have though is placing the ball in gaps vs fast bowlers. I mean as in clipping them through midwicket, closing the face of the bat on impact to maneuver the ball. How do you practice it? I sometimes close the face a little too soon and that may result in a leading edge. @Chief Destroyer @Big Mac @dhump

    Will post a video soon of yours truly, Sully bhai, having a bat, but for now you will have to use your imagination

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    Quote Originally Posted by Suleiman View Post
    Okay guys, been a few months. Have gotten a higher backlift now, one question I have though is placing the ball in gaps vs fast bowlers. I mean as in clipping them through midwicket, closing the face of the bat on impact to maneuver the ball. How do you practice it? I sometimes close the face a little too soon and that may result in a leading edge. @Chief Destroyer @Big Mac @dhump

    Will post a video soon of yours truly, Sully bhai, having a bat, but for now you will have to use your imagination
    I am still not sure why you opted for higher back lift ?? what is the reason ?? something tells me it is purely cosmetic and you are not comfortable with it.

    As far as playing in the gaps set imaginary field in nets and while batting one important thing for me is to actually focus on the gaps and not on the fielders. Also absolute basics like playing under your eyes rolling the wrists you stay in control you can play down the ground or get air.




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk


    جاگن والیاں رجّ کے لٹیا اے،
    سوئے تسیں وی او، سوئے اسیں وی آں۔

  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Suleiman View Post
    Okay guys, been a few months. Have gotten a higher backlift now, one question I have though is placing the ball in gaps vs fast bowlers. I mean as in clipping them through midwicket, closing the face of the bat on impact to maneuver the ball. How do you practice it? I sometimes close the face a little too soon and that may result in a leading edge. @Chief Destroyer @Big Mac @dhump

    Will post a video soon of yours truly, Sully bhai, having a bat, but for now you will have to use your imagination
    It's a difficult shot to execute in the start. Requires a lot of practice.

    Focus entirely on using your top hand as guide. Practice playing the shot with the top hand only. The bottom hand follows the top. Obviously playing under your eyes is key.

    Front-foot or back-foot, you've got to commit yourself. Don't get caught in-between.


    A skilled hawk conceals its talons.

  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by dhump View Post
    I am still not sure why you opted for higher back lift ?? what is the reason ?? something tells me it is purely cosmetic and you are not comfortable with it.

    As far as playing in the gaps set imaginary field in nets and while batting one important thing for me is to actually focus on the gaps and not on the fielders. Also absolute basics like playing under your eyes rolling the wrists you stay in control you can play down the ground or get air.




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    The reason was mainly because I was struggling with short pitched stuff, and making my backlift slightly higher has helped with that. I tried not to make it too crazy like Lara, more like KP I suppose.

    Cosmetic was bonus

    Hmm okay that sounds good, focusing on the gaps instead of the fielders. I think i rush myself too much when I first come on to the crease instead of looking around, will try to do that.

    Quote Originally Posted by Chief Destroyer View Post
    It's a difficult shot to execute in the start. Requires a lot of practice.

    Focus entirely on using your top hand as guide. Practice playing the shot with the top hand only. The bottom hand follows the top. Obviously playing under your eyes is key.

    Front-foot or back-foot, you've got to commit yourself. Don't get caught in-between.
    Yeah have heard this, and will try practicing it with just the top hand.

    Thanks.

  33. #33
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    Umar Amin should read this thread for tips.

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