2008, pp 143-150

Cricket Batting Stroke Timing of a Batsman When Facing a Bowler and a Bowling Machine (P26)

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Abstract

Cricket batsmen must evaluate each delivery and select a shot to play from temporal and spatial information gained from the movements and anatomical position of the bowler (pre-release cues), initial ball flight and their own previous experience. Current batting training methods often make use of bowling machines; however these machines offer the batsman no pre-release visual cues pertaining to ball type. Previous research has suggested that highly skilled batsmen are superior to less skilled players in the pick-up of pre ball flight information and that the bowling arm provides referential information regarding ball type.

A pilot study has been conducted to establish the different approaches adopted by a batsman when faced with a human bowler and a bowling machine. The movements and reaction times of an amateur (English premier club level) batsman are compared for both scenarios. Front and side on high speed video footage was recorded of the batsman when facing a random selection of deliveries from a human bowler and a bowling machine. Front on high speed footage of the bowler/bowling machine was simultaneously recorded allowing the responses of the batsman to be analysed when facing a human bowler (with visual cues) and a bowling machine (without visual cues).