With Cricket being such a technical game, having the right equipment is vital.
Ensuring you have the right protective equipment is of paramount importance when you’re standing at the crease. Alongside this, ensuring you have a bat that is suitable to your size and style of play is not only crucial for performance but for your safety as well.
Having The Correct Size Cricket Bat
When batting, so much of your success depends on the quality of your technique and the quality of your timing. Having the correct tools to allow you to implement those ideas to the best of your ability therefore naturally serves to give you the best opportunity for success.
Therefore when at the crease, having the wrong sized bat can play havoc with your stroke play and massively impact your performance. Ensuring you have the correct bat for your style can allow you the fluidity to execute your shots and score the runs that your technique deserves.
What To Consider With Your Cricket Bat
Despite all these ideals, how can you guarantee you are getting the right size bat for you?
When it comes to the size of cricket bat that you are looking for, there is an essential relationship between size and weight.
Too small and you’ll struggle to make clean contact with the ball, find the middle and generate power. Too big and it will take you longer to execute your shots, thus making timing the ball difficult and getting it off the square becoming a stressful ordeal.
With weight, you are looking at similar problems;
Too light and you will struggle to generate the power your shots deserve. Too heavy and you will struggle for hand and bat speed through your shot.
It can therefore be a difficult balance to strike but one that is essential to do so; especially with the technical development of young cricketers. With so many things to consider, we are going to focus on the length of your cricket bat and finding a suitable size to play with.
How Long Does My Cricket Bat Need To Be
When it comes to measuring the length of a bat, there are some generic guidelines for optimal sizes dependant on your height. Whilst these guidelines do not translate perfectly to every individual, they offer a starting position from which you can assess the suitability for your game.
|Size of Bat
|4 Years Old
|6 Years Old
|8 Years Old
|9 Years Old
|10 Years Old
|12 Years Old
|12-14 Years old
|Full Size (Short Handle)
|15+ Years Old
|Full Size (Long Handle)
|15+ Years Old
Outside of this remit, the most important thing is to work out what feels right for you and to remember that this is just a guideline. An individuals’ height, leg length and stance can all affect the optimum size and weight of bat whilst growing up, as well as the style and strength of cricketer.
One of the most prominent considerations is that of the stance of an individual at the crease. Whilst all young cricketers are told the importance of bending their knees whilst batting, this can often be taken to extremes.
Cricket Bat Variances
Short Handle and Long Handle (as well as Long Blade) bats offer an extra degree of variance for those looking to find the perfect the sized bat.
The most common adult cricket bat size is a Short Handle, (often abbreviated as SH). The Short Handle option for a cricket bat lends itself perfectly to individuals sized between 5ft 9 and around 6ft, a category within which a considerable number of individuals could be categorised. The distinguishable factor on a SH bat is, as the name suggests, a shorter handle, approximately around 85cm in length.
In contrast, Long Handle cricket bats (often abbreviated to LH), are perfect for individuals standing taller than 6ft and provide, as the name suggests, a longer handle with which to grip the bat. In total, this brings the LH version of a bat to approximately 2.5cm taller than a SH bat. Whilst that may not seem like a lot, the balance and feel of the bat can be massively affected so ensuring you identify the correct weight to accompany your new purchase will be crucial!
The important thing to remember throughout the process of choosing between a Short Handle and a Long Handle bat at the full-size end of the spectrum is that the size of the blade itself remains constant. There will be no change to the size of the area of the bat with which you hit the ball and therefore the specifics of the handle and overall length are the only facets that can change.
Different Brands of Cricket Bats
World-renowned manufacturer Gray-Nicolls provide a simplistic overview of their range of Junior Bats available to purchase, as well as their own independent guide to sizings on their website that helps to identify the key characteristics of choosing a new cricket bat. Outside of this, being able to identify the perfect size, weight and graphics on your new purchase to suit your game will be crucial to letting the runs flow!
As with all advice on equipment, we strongly recommend getting your hands on a variety of bat lengths and weights to identify the style best suited to you. From there, identifying a cricketer whom you wish to emulate or replicate the style of would often be a good starting point as the traits unique to their style of batting would often be reciprocated in the benefits of their bat.