Saturday, October 25, 2008

2 down fingers No.1

Not such a good practice today. I didn't get over onto the field till much later in the day and I had my boys with me so we were using the plastic balls and doing a range of different things, bowling, batting and catching so I wasn't able to focus in the same way that I would normally do. Towards the end I settled down a bit and started to concentrate more.

Again I was looking at trying different things with the fingers, spreading them wider and having them closer, having the ball in the palm more - things like that. Towards the end of the session I found that the 2 fingers down seem to be very important. I've often noticed since I started trying to bowl the leg break that when I drag the ball down it does seem to spin more and it's apparent that part of the reason the ball was dragged down was that the ball feels as though it gets stuck to the 2 fingers down or rather these drag across the ball in the wrong way. But it's these fingers that I reckon are instrumental in my case in getting the ball to spin in the right direction. I can bowl Top Spinners and it's exactly these fingers that impart the spin, the 2 up fingers only seem to guide the ball. So today bowling straight balls at the end of the session I paid more attention to the placing of these down fingers. It looks as though I get a lot more spin on the ball if I spread the 2 down fingers and have then very definitely apart and on the seam. I've just looked at the Shane Warne/Mark Nicholas video on youtube again and looking at the close up of his release on the Leg Break it's very different in comparison to mine, to his delivery/release has the back of the hand facing him. The closest resemblence to my Leg Break is his slider, which if you watch the clip does turn like a mini leg break. But the interesting thing with his Leg Break is the 2 down fingers are very much the last thing on the ball and you can see that the mechanics of the action suggest as I suspected that it's these fingers that primarily putting the spin on the ball.

So that puts a spanner in the works a bit, as I would imagine that if I was to try and bowl with the back of my hand facing me it would either come out as a top spinner or a googly. But it's something to ponder?

In the short term what I'll do is practice in the manner that I earlier suggested e.g. still continue to bowl straight but try and emphasise the action of the 2 down fingers - make sure they are right in the seam and stay on the ball till the last minute. As we walked home we walked past the artificial wicket and I tried this on there and there was a hint of turn and this is on a surface that doesn't facilitate spin at all, so that was quite promising? Tomorrow I'm assured that it's going to rain all day, so it looks like I'm unlikely to get any practice.

Later...... I've just looked again at and noticed that the way Jenner grips the ball is similar to what I've been doing today and he says very clearly that it is those 2 down fingers especially the last finger that imparts the spin, so it does sound like I'm onto something? All I'm looking to do is give the impression that I'm primarily a Leg Break bowler, so just as long as I can bowl an accurate ball that spin towards slips if only a bit I'm going to be happy because it does seem that it's then unusual to be able to bowl a good googly as well and that is something I can do. The other thing with these Leg Breaks is the bounce and the speed - they are so much faster and bouncier than all my other balls so it just seems the potential to then surprise the bat with either a Flipper or the Googly is massively increased?