Monday, April 06, 2009

Loads of new stuff

A busy cricket kind of day today even though there wasn't any real intention for it to be that way. A couple nights ago on the website on the wrist spin forum one of the blokes 'Macca' mentioned another obscure wrist spin delivery used by the great Clarrie Grimmett - and and again it's another variation of the flipper which means if I work on it gives me four variations of the Flipper -

1. The Warnesque/Benaud bog standard Flipper
2. The Gipper - now known to be Grimmetts 'Wrong Wrong Un'
3. The Grimmett Flipper
4. The forward spinning Flipper which Grimmett refers to as one of his secret balls

And it's the No.4 the forward spinning flipper that I've been mucking about with today. It's tricky to bowl as it does the complete opposite to the normal flipper and actually does what a Wrong Un does without looking anything like a Wrong Un - e.g. it spins like an off-spinner but has top spin so has the other attributes of a Top Spinner I'm assuming? The actual physical action of bowling it is tricky too as you do exactly what you do with the flipper but instead you click it back towards yourself instead of forward. Bowling a few times today it looks as though it might be useful, but feels as though it would take some time getting the line and length sorted. I've got the action and the turn I just need to add the line and length, so I may persevere with it in small steps and see how it goes?

Ben, Joe and I went over the field and were joined by one of the other kids off the estate and he'd somehow got a lot better over the winter and we had a knock around, but Ben ended up getting very upset by the fact that Joe bowled him with his first ball after he'd had to graft in order to bowl Joe out. He doesn't seem to grasp that what Joe does is far more effective against batsmen that give it the Biggun, he knows about Shane Warne and Mulrali and the fact that they take so many wickets but seems to think that bowling the ball fast is going to always be the best way. Whereas Joe just lobs up a flighty ball, Ben see 6's light up in front of his eyes like a fruit machine - swings at it misses and is out of his ground by about 3' and the newbie wicket keeper has time to go to the shops first before he takes the bails off!

At the end of the session I threw some balls down to Ben to try and get him to bat properly and gain a little more confidence.

A couple of hours later when Ben wasn't doing anything I asked him if he wanted to bowl at me to help with my batting and he was up for it and we spent a good hour with just Ben and me. He bowled - I tried to bat and as usual he bowled me out twice. But we practiced somewhere completely new. In between our field and the house there's a big verge adjacent to a wood and on the verge is a big old Oak Tree. It's bit rough but the council had just cut the grass today so it was short. In the summer probably due to the fact that it's next to the wood the ground here is as dry as a bone and the grass all but dies off, so apart from it undulating a bit it might be a better surface that the field? Initially we bowled using the trunk of the tree as the stumps but as Ben got into the groove I got the stumps out and set them up and we had a good session (Remember Ben's the one least likely to want to practice). So I was trying to play front foot defensive shots or drives and he was trying to bowl me out. The only down side is that either side of the wicket is either a wood or a road and it's the off-side that the wood's on so loads of potential for lost balls.

This is also the location I've had in mind for our portable nets and if I can get some enthusiasm for playing here I might go ahead with the net idea and gradually get all the bits together to make it? The thing is Ben seemed to prefer bowling here than on the field, so if that continues it looks as though we might have an idea in the making. The next step which was Ben's idea was to cut the grass today to make it really short. we didn't have time for that but that's on the agenda for tomorrow if it doesn't rain.

The rollers on the mower have eventually started to give up the ghost and disintegrate, so I've made some replacement ones out of Apple tree branches from where we cut down our Apple Tree and they seem to be a good replacement. So the mower is back in action.

I'll try and upload some images of the new wicket area tomorrow if we cut it and get out there, but there's a chance that it may rain over night. The other good thing about this new wicket is that it's just yards from my garage and that means I can easily get the roller on it, so things are looking good.

Davidson Cricket Balls

These are the hard cheap balls you get off Ebay and I've been bowling with one on concrete so that it eventually disintegrated and I'd be able to see why they're so crap. They're made out of a weird array of 'Stuff'. I did take some pictures of the stuff but in between taking the pictures the macro close up mode was turned off automatically and many of the pictures are useless - but some are okay. The ball is made of a centre that is about the size of a golf ball. This is made of what looks like some kind of resin/plastic mixed with either cardboard or possibly very thin layers of cork. If it is cork it's not constructed in layers it's just mixed in with the resin randomly. This ball is slightly elastic and bounces a bit. Glued around that loosely and very loosely tied is more or the cardboardy fake cork stuff, layered quite tightly and this makes up the rest of the volume of the ball. Then the 2nd from last section is a layer about 2-3mm thick of string. Then a thin layer of cardboard and then the leather. Basically rubbish. The components inside look like recycled rubbish rather than quality materials.