This is a guest article from experienced club cricketer AB
Batting partnerships are crucial to the success of a batting side: a good partnership completely changes the momentum of a game.
Two or three good partnerships is enough to win the match.
But in order to make a successful partnership, it's essential that the two batsmen work together in a complementary manner, helping each other out along the way. Here we look at two ways that batsmen use s intelligent tactics to push on to a successful partnership.
Pick a bowler each
This method is suitable for the first half of a 40-50 over game, and particularly applies to opening partnerships.
Quite often batsmen prefer different types of bowling: some like pace, some like spin; some like the ball moving into them and some prefer the ball moving away from them. Even in Test cricket, opening partnerships have a prearranged agreement that one batsman will take more of the strike against one bowler.
Why not use this tactic at club level?
Imagine the opposition open up with very different bowling style: a tall quick bowling back of a length at one end, and a dibbly-dobbly away swing bowler pitching the ball up at the other.
Discuss with your partner whether you have a preference for facing either. Sometimes you will both prefer the same bowler, in which case simply carry on as before; but often you will find you have different preferences.
Use this to your advantage.
Without turning down easy runs, you can sensibly manipulate the strike so you each face more of your preferred bowler.
Appoint junior and senior partners
This method works well when you are looking to get on with it: 20 over games where you're looking to score at around 8 an over throughout, or in the 2nd half of 40-50 over games.
In this method, one partner takes on the "senior" role, and the other one takes on the "junior" role.
The senior partner is responsible for striking the ball hard, hitting boundaries whenever possible, and pushing the field back. He will hit over the top if necessary.
The junior partner is responsible for pushing the ball into the gaps, dropping down quick singles to get the senior partner back on strike, and pulling the field back in again.
The simplicity of the arrangement often brings out the best in both batsmen as each of them is given a specific task to focus on.
Not only that, but the field will either soon get very ragged, with gaps emerging, or the fielders will get very tired from running in and out from the rope several times an over.
Normally the best way to organise this is for the newest batsman to the crease to start off as the junior partner, and then graduate to act as the senior partner if the other batsman is dismissed. This way, every batsman has time to get his eye in before being expected to hit out, but a high run-rate is still maintained.
Do you have any other methods that you like to use in your club?
Leave a comment and let us know.