Cricket tips for the budding cricketer

Today cricket has become the most famous sport in the world. Every child these days aspires to become a cricketer, especially in our country. And as with any sport, there are certain things to be kept in mind in order to achieve success. In this article, I will discuss a few useful tips about cricket for budding cricketers.

Right & Wrong Thoughts

Lets take a look at the Right and Wrong thoughts the players can have and discourage the latter.

Wrong Thoughts:

  • There is no point in trying. I won't succeed.

  • Oh! He is here! He always beats me.

  • If I can hit the ball, I will win this match.

  • I just can't hit straight. Only Piyush can. Forget it.

  • Right Thoughts:

  • If I stick to my work, I will improve on my game.

  • He is of no consequence to me. I will continue my work regardless of what he does.

  • This is like any other ball. I would rather concentrate on my style.

  • Of course I can hit. Why don't I ask Piyush to help me.

  • Set of goals for the budding cricketer

  • Set a target of small goals with an 80% plus sense of achievement.

  • Increase your efforts gradually.

  • If you have 2-3 goals see that they mingle in to give you a perfect picture.

  • Be determined.

  • Focus on mastery of task with an objective ( positive self talk )

  • (a) I shall not get out playing an incorrect shot today.
    (b) I shall bowl a good length, line and shall not give more than two runs an over today.
    (c) I will concentrate on good technique and improve.
    (d) I shall always keep the team spirit

    See that your failure at the game is the step to success and not a feeling of being let down. Do not get disheartened.
  • Develop self-listening capabilities. You can literally talk to yourself in positions of achievement. No one else can motivate you.

  • Avoid late nights.

  • Reserve everything for the six hours on the field.

  • Do not get disheartened by mistakes.

  • Rehearse your assigned role on the field in your mind. This will help you being focussed on the field.

  • Make sure you arrive on the ground with plenty of time to spare.

  • Be respectful to the umpire even if he gives a decision that goes against your team.

  • Do thank the umpire, scorers and grounds men at the end of the game.

  • At the end of the game, whether you win or lose, it's always a pleasant gesture to shake hands with the opposite team.

  • Last but not the least, compliment the host and canteen staff for the good food served to you.

  • Wicket-keeper's Tips

  • Let the ball come to you. Never snatch it.

  • Your legs should move swiftly. Your head should move less. This is important.

  • As a wicketkeeper, see to it that you're always prepared for the unexpected. Be alert and in correct position to catch the swift throw.

  • It is always helpful to keep the left leg in line with the stump.

  • Do not choose oversized pads. Try to take the ball in front of your belly.
  • Don't lose heart, if you have had a bad game. It happens to us all the time.

  • Give yourself a name for having a safe pair of hands and go as per your captain's instructions.

  • Sit on the ground with gloves resting on the ground & weight distributed on both feet.

  • Position yourself on the off stump so that you have a clear view of the ball & you can pick the line of delivery as soon as possible.

  • Bowling Tips

  • A comfortably fitting pair of shoes, a charged up stamina are basic keys to effective bowling.

  • Your run up & delivery should be so well oiled as to keep wides & no balls to the barest minimum. Bowling extras have often cost a team a match.

  • Good line & length come through hard work & practice at the nets.

  • Never lose your line & length for want of practice.

  • As a bowler, you are battling the batsman who will intelligently anticipate each of your deliveries. You must equally intelligently vary your line, length & pace & also make the ball move to varying degrees, to keep the batsman guessing. An intelligent bowler is often more effective than a gutsy bowler who bowls his heart out without any thinking.

  • It is just as important to take wickets as it is to contain the flow of runs, depending upon the dynamics of the game in progress.

  • The greatest bowler cannot achieve results without the co operation of his team mates on the field. Show courtesy & understanding to minor misfields & even to a dropped catch to win the whole hearted support of your team mates.
  • Never challenge the umpires decision nor appeal without good reason.

  • Be alert for any caught & bowled chances that might come your way, & also for any run saving opportunities off a straight drive, by keeping your focus on the ball even after it has left your hand.

  • As in any discipline of cricket, good manners make a GOOD bowler GREAT.

  • Batting Tips

  • To be a good batsman you must be a team player with an undying love for & a single minded approach to the game.

  • Select a bat which you feel comfortable with; not too heavy nor too light.
  • Practice makes perfect. Some of the best batsmen in the world are known to spend hours each day trying to connect the ball to the middle of the bat.

  • Your batting will depend on how you hold the bat. In this age of television sport, you can perfect this by carefully watching your favorite batsman in action.

  • Develop a grip on the bat which should be comfortable & allow you to play your natural shots freely.

  • Protective gloves must be comfortable for a proper grip on and a free movement of the bat.

  • Take a good stance, keep your eyes focused on the flight of the ball & move with determination to play the shot as the delivery demands.

  • All good batsmen have to be good runners between the wickets. Make sure you have a good understanding with your fellow batsman on the crease about calls for a run, signals & warnings. It is normally a good practice for the call to be given for a run by the batsman who has the ball in his line of vision, be it the striker or non striking batsman.

  • Every delivery is a battle between bowler & the batsman on strike. Never allow the bowler to control your game through your lack of concentration.

  • Never get provoked by the bowler the fielder and take the umpire's decision sportingly. Good manners the crease make a GOOD batsman GREAT.

  • Fielding Tips

    1. Though the least popular discipline of cricket among children who either want to bat or bowl, fielding is in fact the most important part of the game.
    2. Runs saved through alertness on field are runs scored for the fielding side, so to speak.
    3. Catches, as the old saying goes, can often win matches.
    4. A good fielding display can often save the day for the team when both batting & bowling have failed.
    5. Work on your fielding as it will never let you down.
    6. Practice catches with three to four guys at a time & not with too many.
    7. Effective fielding consists of:
  • Taking catches at varying heights through total concentration.

  • Saving runs by giving the hurtling ball a good chase, a quick pick up & a sharp & intelligent throw to the side most likely to get you a run out.

  • Throwing for a direct hit on the stumps from varying distances.

  • Putting psychological pressure on the batsmen by restricting the flow of their runs.

  • All these can be achieved only through hard work & practice. In today's competitive cricket you can win or lose matches through sharpness or sloppiness in the fielding department.
    8. Develop good fielding techniques such as a relaxed yet alert posture. a smooth flow of limbs in catching, picking up or throwing the ball , & a stamina to be able to dive into or to throw yourself at a ball.
    9. Practice the following regularly :
    (a)Taking catches close in as well as in the deep.
    (b) Directing throws at the stumps from varying distances, with a success rate of hitting the stumps not less than seven times out of ten.
    (c)Diving & recovering fast.
    10. Good fielders transmit their positive traits to their fellow fielders by appreciating a good piece of work, & by exhorting one & all to excel.
    11. While taking a catch, let the ball melt in your hands. Do not snatch it. A common reason for a dropped catch is to rush to an approaching ball instead of waiting for it to come to you.
    12. Be alert to any signal or instructions from your captain on the field.
    13. Fielding is such an important facet of cricket that many a specialist batsman is known to spend several hours each day honing up his skills in fielding.

    The Coach has asked me to improve my fielding. He has advised me to practice the following:-

    (a) Keep a tennis ball in your pocket and play it on the way to school
    (b) Throw it on the wall and catch with a rebound.
    (c) Throw it on the top of the roof and practice for catches.
    (d) Form a circle and throw a ball swiftly at each other. Be alert for quickness and better coordination.

  • Watching T.V. -There could always be an odd day when your team does not have a match. Listen to the experts comments and improve your game.

  • Learn to throw full toss to the top of the stumps. Repeat several times

  • Never take your eyes off the ball. Finish the catch with hugging the ball close to your chest so that it does not slip out of your hands.

  • If you are in the first slip position, watch the ball all the time.

  • If you are in the second or third slip or gully watch the line from the bat to stop the ball.

  • If you are roughly 25-40 yards from the bat, your job is to save singles.

  • If you are an outstanding fielder, you will be at the boundary to stop fours and sixes.

  • Change over briskly between overs. Its the alert fielding side that wins the game. Be relaxed when you catch the ball or else you may drop it.

  • Your abdominals should be strong to give you the power to hit sixes.

  • Play squash and tennis as hobby games to improve your coordination.

  • You drop a catch, you muff your throw to the wicket keeper, and he has to run to save an extra run. Yes it happens to the best of players.

  • Cricket is a game to be enjoyed. There is no game in the world to beat it. Try and put all this in practice and you will be enjoying the game and winning it too.

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