Saturday, March 21, 2009

Not many updates here lately as I've been working on getting my wrist spinners on-line resource in place

On Thursday went to nets and it was pretty uneventful, bowled poorly and batted badly. Got smacked all over the place by Ross Fulbrook which was pretty depressing after having his Dad a week or so before all over the place and saying 'I haven't got a clue what to do with your bowling' and his Dad used to be one of our better openers I think. Whereas Ross is a number 6 or 7? Anyway the less said about Thursday the better I reckon.

It's been nice here in the UK very sunny all day with the temp around the 16 - 18 degree centigrade mark which for this time of year is about degrees too warm. We've had now about 2 weeks of dry weather so all of the playing fields and pitches are drying out and our own field is drying up nicely and we're now already reaping the benefits of the little bit of rolling I did over the 2 or 3 weeks just gone when the field was still a bit soggy. So today I had half an hour on the grass bowling at one stump trying to bowl the Biggun. It wasn't that good - sometimes it happens a lot of times it doesn't, but when it happens there's a lot of turn, but the difference in the action feels absolutely minimal. Later outside the house in the road I replicated it again after trying for 15 - 20 minutes and bowled 4 - 5 in a row and then was asked to do something by my wife, which then seemed to be the pattern for the rest of the day as I bowled at every opportunity I could.... At the school outside when the kids were swimming, again in the street and it seemed every time I was getting into the groove as such and getting the turn I was called to do something else! Hardly what you'd call a situation where you could focus 100%.

I've been reading some of the Philpott book and again picked up on some more insights into what I might be doing wrong. Page 62 he talks about bowlers with a vertical arm action (that's me) and he says that the vertical arms good for Off-spin (That's me again with my bloody wrong uns), but points out that the greatest Leg Spinners, Grimmett and Warne bowl with a far lower round arm action. He also mentions their height in relation to this saying that smaller blokes bowling wrist spin need to flight the ball upwards so the ball leaves the hand in an upward trajectory. I'm only 5'10" so it sounds like I'd benefit from the round arm action when trying to bowl the leg break? I also decided that in order to get the Biggun going I'd have to incorporate the flick. I can manage the big flick with the wrong un and the top-spinner but not the Leg break, so it was with all of this in mind that today during all of these bowling sessions all I did was try and bowl the ball with a much lower action and give it a big flick. Philpott also mentions using all the segments of the arm 'Use all the levers' - shoulders, upper arm, forearm, wrist and fingers to get the flick to rip the ball and spin it. I think this is another aspect of my bowling (especially the new leg break I've got) that is missing from my action, but today trying to flick the ball with the wrist, with the lower arm action I noticed stress in my forearm muscles for the first time ever, so perhaps that's an indication that I'm using all of or more of the levers?

In the latter session in the afternoon I resorted to shortening the distance over which I was bowling and it worked. Over a shorter distance using a stand start I can bowl a flighty Biggun that turns the proverbial country mile. So I think there's potential there and a key feature was the awareness of the position or my wrist, if I don't concentrate it turns round into the position for the wrong un, but if I 100% focus I can get the arm over and flick with the wrist in the right place and it does turn. So it looks like another intensive few months of practicing and observing what it is that I need to do to bowl big leg breaks.