Pitchvision Academy


We all love to be inspired to better things in cricket, so this week’s newsletter is all about getting inspired. We look at what to work on in nets as a batsman or bowler.

We also discuss how to coach players like an International coach with England Under-17 coach Iain Brunnschweiler joining the team to pass on his inspiring tips.

Have a great weekend,

David Hinchliffe

How to Coach Your Club Like You are Working with England Players

PitchVision Academy’s newest coaching panel member is Iain Brunnschweiler, former professional player and a coach at Hampshire and England’s Development Programme. In this article he gives an insight into a recent high performance camp he ran.

During a recent training camp put on for a group of talented 16 and 17 year-olds in the England Development Programme, we ran a series of competitive scenarios.

During the course of the camp we looked at several different phases of a one-day game; the new ball overs, a power play with seamers bowling, a power play with spinners bowling, and an end of innings run chase.

All of these situations arise during most one-day games, so being able to get some simulated match scenarios was beneficial for several reasons.

The players were encouraged to get into the mindset that they would if they were faced with the scenario in a real life situation, and you could really see how well they focused in.

This allowed them to use their own routines, and really get the match play feeling. By having a scenario it meant that every shot actually carried some meaning, and they had to adjust their play according to the result of previous deliveries and the unfolding situation.

The bowlers had to think about the fields that they were going to set, and how they were going to bowl to those fields as effectively as possible, while the batsmen had to think about their approach related to the field and the phase of the game that was being simulated.

From a coach’s point of view, it gave valuable information about how the players perceived the situation and the plans they were putting in place.

The conversations and dialogue between the players and the coaches showed how well this worked, and I felt that there was so much positive learning going on, with players really thinking about their game and the best way to approach the situation.

Plus there was a high level of competition that was struck up between the players. And they enjoyed it.

This is a vital part of training at every level and during every session. By making things competitive you get the best out of your players effort and application, as long as you pitch the challenge at the right level for the players taking part.

And - as well as the players clearing loving the fact that they are competing (and the fun and banter that normally ensues) - you are also reinforcing key learning about putting skills under the pressure of a competitive environment.

Ultimately, players not only need to have a grasp of all of the wide variety of skills that the game of cricket demands, but they also need to be able to perform them when it matters. The best way to do this, is to have practiced them in an environment when the heat is on, even if it is just for bragging rights within the team or squad as to who won the challenge.

One of the main ideas of the Inspired Cricket Manual, is to give coaches the tools to enable them to make their training competitive, challenging and most importantly enjoyable.

 If you set out a drill from the manual, there are suggested variations to help you keep the same drill fresh week after week, and also to help inspire you to think up new variations.

There are ideas for setting targets and challenges - like I did with the Performance players - whether it is for fielding, batting or bowling.

Once you’ve had a go you can start to pitch it at the right level for the players you’re working with.

How many catches in a row?
Which team can hit the stumps the most?

Can the batsmen score the runs, or will the bowler close the game out?

All of these will help get the competitive juices flowing for everyone involved. Even the simplest drill is incredibly effective if it gets the players pitting their skills against each other or a suitable target.

I have used all of the drills with a wide variety of players; it’s amazing how you can use the same drill just as effectively with a group of under-11’s and a group of professionals! 

And the manual also has Pro Tips from some top international and domestic players and coaches, giving their thoughts on how to get the best out of your training.

If you make training fun, challenging and competitive, you will get the best out of your players, and they will not only be best prepared for the next time they play a match, but will have enjoyed the training too.

To emulate Iain’s work with the England Under 17 players and learn to pitch your drills to the level of your players, get the Insipred Cricket Manual from PitchVision Academy, it’s available now. Click here

Discuss this article with other subscribers

Preseason Drills for Spin Bowlers

Just as with the pace bowlers in a previous article, we are concentrating on drills and progressions in pre-season. This week it's the turn of the spinners.

Bowling from the Delivery Stride Drills

I ask spinners to bowl from a stationary position at the crease which enables the player to isolate a certain part of the action or a part of the technique. So get your bowlers to work from their delivery stride initially and once they can hold the action and the technical enhancements that you majoring on in your coaching.

Things to work on and observe in Delivery Stride Drills

 Different alignments of the seam angle against the pitch to produce different spin results (top spin, maximum breaking ball, stock ball, arm ball, doosra)

Up and over shoulder rotation within the bowling action (some bowlers have a tendency to rotate their shoulders in a horizontal axis, this reduces the shape of the ball in flight)

Completion of the bowling action. Ideally, a spin bowler should find that their bowling hand completes the action around the opposite trouser pocket area. This is an indicator that a full and complete bowling arm circle has occurred. Many bowlers have a tendency to cut the bowling circle short and their bowling hand ends up near the bottom of the ribcage. This reduces the dip on the ball and often leads to a loss of control of length.

Appropriate flight. Shane Warne's mentor, Terry Jenner carried a "Spin bowlers kit" around in his bag. One part of that was a simple piece of rope that he would fix across the net and challenge the spin bowler to deliver the ball above the rope yet dip and land within a coned area on a length. If a bowler is rotating the bowling shoulder up and over (rather than round) and completing the bowling action to the opposite trouser pocket then there is a good chance of the ball being flighted from the hand, over the rope and down into the coned area on a length.

For a net session, the cones can be taken away and chalk areas applied to the indoor pitch or matted area to measure the flight of the ball in a net session. A batter can then be introduced to play against the spin bowler delivering from the crease


Once a spin bower has mastered this then a couple of steps are introduced and the results are assessed, if the technique holds up under momentum then the approach can be extended to incorporate a full run up.

Bowling from the Crease or a Couple of Steps in Nets

Just as with the fast bowlers last week, the stationary drill and then a couple of steps progression can be used within nets. The watchword again is to keep an eye on the competitive nature kicking as this can lead to technical breakdown.

The option here is to take the isolating technical focus away and work on delivery of skills (executing variations) or tactics (field setting/angle of delivery/getting batters off strike) or if the bowler is in danger of complete technical breakdown then take him out of the net and back into the drills above.

As preseason progresses, the bowler will be a more compete technical model who can adjust to the competition scenarios that we put in place, the personal battles with the batters and bowl your side to victory on a number of different surface types. 

Discuss this article with other subscribers

Cricket Show 147: Iain Brunnschweiler

Mark Garaway and David Hinchliffe discuss batting collapses in the light of India and England’s poor performances on tour. Every team has had a collapse, so the team talk about ways you can at least try to prevent them in your side.

Iain Brunnschweiler joins the show on the phone to talk about his work with the England Under 17 players in a recent camp, and also his Inspired Cricket Manual.


Plus we answer your questions on returning to cricket after a long break and the NLP term; “associated state”.  The links that Mark outlines are:


How to Get in Touch With the Show

Our contact email can be found here.

Use our twitter or facebook accounts.

Or you can call and leave a message (it’s an answer phone, not manned but we check it every day). If it’s a good story or question we will call you back for a chat.

  • UK  +44 (0) 208 816 7691
  • AUST: +61 (02) 8005 7925
  • USA: +1 347 722 1981

How to Listen to the Show

You can download the show onto your computer by right clicking on the link below and choosing "Save Target as..."

You can also subscribe to the show:

Subscribe to the show in Itunes

Click here to subscribe in iTunes.

If you don't use iTunes You can add the feed manually.

Discuss this article with other subscribers

Ditch the Nets at Winter Training to Make a Better Preseason

Coach Darren Talbot laments a wasted chance in this article. To find out more about Darren Talbot Cricket Coaching click here.

Around preseaon clubs plan their senior and junior winter net training sessions.

Maybe you are doing it now.

One of the biggest issues is finding a venue as there are still nowhere enough indoor net facilities to cope with the demand from clubs, schools and individuals.

But why do we do nets? 

Batsmen: Don’t Make This Mistake When You Get a Full Toss

The full toss is rated next to the rank half tracker when it comes to the top 5 worst balls a bowler can bowl.

But worryingly for batsmen the full-toss is often in line with the stumps. And that is why you should rank the full toss as the best bad ball a bowler can bowl.

You need to learn how to play it right.

So often you see a batman’s eye light up at the sight of a full toss. It makes sense because the ball hasn’t pitched so there cannot be any movement off the wicket, and oddly a full toss rarely swings, reducing the risk of late movement.


About PitchVision Academy

Welcome to this week's guide to playing and coaching better cricket.

I'm David Hinchliffe and I'm Director of the PitchVision Academy team. With this newsletter you are benefitting directly from over 25 Academy coaches. Our skills include international runs and wickets, first-class coaching, cutting-edge research and real-life playing experience.

World Exclusive


Want Coaching?

Send to a Friend

Do you have a friend or team mate who would be interested in this newsletter? Just hit "forward" in your email program and send it on.

If you received this email from a friend and would like to get subsequent issues, you can subscribe here.


PitchVision Academy

irresistable force vs. immovable object

Thank you for subscribing to PitchVision Academy.
Read more at www.pitchvision.com


To unsubscribe eMail us with the subject "UNSUBSCRIBE (your email)"
Issue: 188
Date: 2012-02-03