Saturday, February 25, 2017

Sunday Cricket Lessons - A Slight Change in Grip Is All It Takes

Last Sunday I padded up bravely as I do these days and stepped on to bat in the nets. Our gang of bowlers were happy to have me to bowl at - we keep challenging each other. I guess they like to have someone who has a go at them and not merely defends. I give little scope for error and hit the ball hard so it challenges them. The new boy offered me his helmet as I was stepping in and was shocked to find me going in to bat without - my worst batting this season was the day I wore a helmet. I trusted myself enough to handle the bowling.

The first half went by rather eventfully as I tried to find some timing. I was playing the ball but without any special timing. And then, almost twenty minutes into my stay in the nets I realised that I was holding the bat too straight unlike my usual grip where the bat face turns slightly inwards towards my front pad. I changed my grip by a couple of inches and lo and behold - the next ball went off the bat like a rocket into the cover region. Incredible change. So well did I hit it that the boy in the next net could not but admire the power in the shot. 'Your old bat sir,' he asked. '22 years old,' I told him and felt pretty ancient saying it but that's the truth. Chandra bought this BDM in the 1994 season when we won the MCC league championship. It's still in good shape.

And then for the next ten minutes it was sheer heaven as I timed the ball beautifully. There is nothing better than seeing the ball race off the bat sweetly, effortlessly. That little shift, that little tuning into frequency is all it takes and then - life is effortless. I wondered why I was struggling all this while.

Seek the sweet spot and we can make those fine adjustments. What seems to be a difficult space can change if we seek to change it, to make its quality better.


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