MELBOURNE: A new design of cricket bat, likely to find acceptance in Twenty20 format of the game, which will allow batsmen play shots using both sides of the willow has been developed by bat-makers Gray-Nicolls.
Batsmen, including Andrew Symonds, have been experimenting with using the back of the bat but have been restricted by its angular shape.
The new bat, which will need ICC approval, is expected to open scoring options for the batsmen in the Twenty20 version of cricket with its smaller and pressed hitting area on the reverse side of the blade.
By using the back of the new bat, batsmen will be able to negotiate better full-length yorker deliveries.
The bat maker Stuart Kranzbuhler, however, doubts Test batsmen would even consider the new model -- but young hitters, looking for an advantage in Twenty20 cricket, are already interested.
"It's a pretty unconventional shot (you play off the back) so I think true batsmen won't even look at doing something like that.
"It would really be a player that's developed himself purely for T20 cricket, who would play that sort of shot," Kranzbuhler was quoted as saying by 'Sydney Morning Herald'.
He said the new bat would meet current ICC specifications and could be made without reducing hitting power from the front as pressing the back would make it about 10 millimetres thinner.
"We've looked at having an area on the back of the bat that's pressed as well (as the front), just in the centre area. That's as far as we've got and we've made a few prototypes but they look pretty rank," he said.
6 months ago