We have covered some standing up to the stumps drills in recent weeks and now we turn our attention to standing back drills.
The key to standing back drills is to develop the following: The quality of the Catch/Take, Footwork, Inside Diving Catch (ankle to knee height and close to body), Outside Diving Catch (the full length one, can be called the TV catch!)
Basic Hitting Drill
The age old drill for standing back is the one where a coach hits to a keeper from 10 yards or more. Adam Gillchrist has a good example of this:
Coaches should hit the ball from as low as possible so it simulates the ball coming off of the pitch, mirroring the appropriate trajectories that a keeper will face in a match situation.
Always specify the handedness of the Batter when hitting. Ideally, this should be player led. This ensures that the player can find a rhythm when practicing and is building specificity into their practice.
I tend to use a stump to help with this as the keeper can then use the stump as his off stump to line up their stance for either a right handed or left handed batter. I note that Gilly isn't using a stump, this will no doubt be because he would be visualising the batter in place and practicing specifically for either the right or left handed batter in his own mind rather than just catching balls.
Coaches should hit balls that simulate deliveries that are presented to a keeper in a match.
Upgrade 1: the Inside Edge Catch
One of the ones that is often missed is the low inside edge catch, so a coach should be hitting most balls to the offside of the keeper and then every now and again change the hit and note how the keeper moves to cover the inside edge. This is a great simulation of the inside nick.
Upgrade 2: Pitch Hitting
Hitting off of a cricket pitch from the place where the ball will bounce is a great drill. A bounce drop feed and hit from the lengths that you are looking to simulate with a Fusion Skyer bat replicates the ball bouncing off of the surface and coming past the stumps to the keeper. It simulates angles and pace perfectly.
Upgrade 3: Hit onto a Katchet Ramp
Place the Katchet on the length where the batter edges the ball. To simulate a front foot nick, place the Katchet a full stride out from the popping crease. I hit rather than throw onto the board as I find that I can be more accurate and can produce greater volume. I hit from as close to the board as I can and use a Fusion Skyer to generate realistic pace rather than me having to swing wildly. The deflections are great and you can also add a slip fielder which also adds to the specific nature of the drill.
Shift the angle of the board to bring in slip or simulate the inside edge catch.