Pitchvision Academy


How often is it that you get advice about the cut shot from a guy who has put the shot to sledgehammer use against the world's best bowlers?

I'm willing to bet the answer is "never". At least, until today, where we head to the Sydney Cricket Ground nets to get advice directly from Aussie legend Michael Bevan. It's part of your exclusive preview of his upcoming online course, and you get it for nothing.

Don't say I never do anything for you!

As if that wasn't enough, the high quality coaching theme continues with Mark Garaway, former England Analyst and Ireland Director of Coaching, giving us tips on fielding; and Steffan Jones, 90mph first-class bowler and strength coach, revealing how he structures his fitness sessions for improving bowling speed.

Wow. I need a rest just writing about it. If you can't find a reason to get stuck in after all that, you need a new sport!

Have a great weekend,

David Hinchliffe

How to Play the Cut Shot


In an exclusive excerpt from Finisher - the streaming online batting coaching course - Michael Bevan gives us his advice on the technical points of the cut shot.

For this technical session, I want to work on the cut shot. The two aspects that are key are:

  • Swing plane
  • Hip snap

What I mean by swing plane is where your bat comes from to where your bat goes. For a safe swing plane and to hit the ball down, you want your bat coming from high to low.

The other thing is hip snap, or engaging your hip, because that's going to help with power. To do this you need your front foot slightly open because that allows you to clear your hips. If you do this right and snap through, your back heel will twist slightly.

You don't need your back foot to go back and across but you need your weight on your front foot, with your toes pointing towards the bowler.

That gives you the opportunity to turn your hips towards the bowler. One of the crucial things for generating power when we're playing a cut shot is the hips, and we want the hips engaged and rotating towards the bowler because that will enable us to generate power in our shot. So, the position of your feet and weight has to be right to ensure that your hips can rotate.

Because you are working on grooving technique, you are not going to work on all these things at once. Take one skill at a time and one body movement at a time to ensure you’re getting it right.

The cut shot is essentially “snappy hips” followed by the up to down motion with the bat and the swing plane, you're going to get power and you're going to get safety because the ball is going to go down and it's going to down quickly.

For more tips on shot selection and technical consistency, including video content, check out Finisher, by Michael Bevan.

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Spin your way to Run Out Success

When fielding in the outfield, sometimes the ball gets hit to our non-throwing side at pace, or we get to the ball with it being slightly behind us.

The pick-up that we looked at last week would not give us the balance to execute a accurate throw into the stumps.

So in this article we look at using the increased pace and angle of the ball to help us create balance by using it to help initiate a spin which leaves us well aligned to our target at point of release.

1. Speed to the ball

Early decision making helps the fielder to move out of their ready position and towards the ball. Players who anticipate well often watch the batter intently to pick up cues about:

  • the direction of the shot
  • weight of shot (often indicated by the swing of the bat)
  • the intention to take off for a quick single

2. Pick-up

Instead of a 1 handed pick up, we collect the ball with two inverted hands (fingers pointing down) this helps to initiate the spin that will rotate us into a strong a balanced position.

3. The spin

With the ball in the hands - and the inverted pick up starting the spin - we rotate with the aim to be to have a strong throwing side leg. This is so we can push back into the stumps and align the feet, hips and shoulders with our target prior to release.

4. Aim

Start looking at the point of impact area on the stumps.

It is proven that when moving, the intended line of vision and the line of the incoming ball meet just ahead of contact with the stumps (or keeper/bowler). So it’s crucial that we get an early look at the target ahead of perfect alignment to increase our chances of direct hitting.

5. Fire

Shoulders, hips and feet all line up for that split second; the throwing arm is cocked and ready and it’s time to let it go!

Ensure that the throwing arm completes its range before following through, and the ball is on its way to sending another batter back to the pavilion.


One thing that can go wrong when you are coaching this is over-rotation, or lack of balance.

If this is happening, slow the feed of the ball down in practice so that the fielder is picking it up just past herself.

You can even take it back further and place a stationary ball, asking the fielder to approach the ball at an acute angle to simulate the position of pick up for this type of throw.

Build up pace from stationary to ½ speed into full speed then over-speed. This is important because you want to build your player's skills up so that your training intensity is eventually higher than your match intensity.

As Peter Moores says "Train hard; play easy!"

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Cricket Show: S4 Episode 9

Mark Garaway, David Hinchliffe and Burners discuss playing and coaching cricket as well as answering your questions in the world's best cricket coaching podcast.

This week on the show we talk about the role of University cricket, how to choose a cricket bat (Burners reveals the great cricket bat con) and the problem of too high a backlift.

The Kevin Pietersen video coaching advice that Garas mentioned can be found in Chapter 1 here.

Download the show straight to your iPad, iPhone or mp3 player!

How to Send in Your Questions

If you want to win a cricket coaching prize, you need to send in your burning questions to the show. If your question is the best one we give you a free online cricket coaching course!

Send in your questions via:

Or you can call and leave your question on the Academy voice mail:

UK +44 (0) 208 816 7691

AUST: +61 (02) 8005 7925

USA: +1 347 722 1981

How to Listen to the Show

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You can also download this show onto your computer by clicking the play button at the top of the article, or clicking on the mp3 to download.


This is show number 202.

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How to Run a Cricket Club: Fundraising

This is part of the How to Run a Cricket Club series on PitchVision Academy

From multi-million professional clubs to a lowly group of friends playing together, all cricket teams need funds.

It's one of the most common club-related questions we get on PitchVision Academy. You are certainly not alone in wondering where you can raise the monies to keep going. It's not about profits but more about getting just enough to stay ahead.

Fitness for Fast Bowlers: Structure of a Gym Session

This is a guest article from fast bowling and strength coach Steffan Jones.

Bowling is one of the most stressful and unnatural activities you can ask your body to do. The stresses involved are immense.


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.



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Issue: 245
Date: 2013-03-08