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With Australia pulling off an incredible victory, Mark Garaway places the focus on helping bowlers how to hit yorkers under pressure. It's an often overlooked aspect to bowling skills. Meanwhile Michael Beven covers the batting moves at the death.

Also, there is a trend around the world to going "smart". iPhone, iPad and internet enabled everything. Part of this is the ability to measure performance in an aim to get better. Cricket is about to benefit from this big time, so we examine how you can easily lead a measured life in your bid for better performance.

Finally, Steffan Jones starts his tale of going from 75-90mph as a bowler. There is hope for us all!

Have a great weekend.

David Hinchliffe

How to Land a Yorker


James Faulkner turned certain loss into monumental victory in the 2nd ODI against England in 2014. He was brilliant but - it has to be said - England were poor in the last gasps of that game.

One TV expert commented in review that "Surely England can’t be practising their yorkers." An easy assumption to make based on the outcome of the game.

However, the bottom line is that all International teams do practice bowling yorkers a lot. So, why couldn't England land them?


I watched the game again and they did land their yorkers at certain points in the game. Ben Stokes delivered 3 in in the 43rd over of the game (score 236-8) when the game was seen as dead and buried.

The next question that came into my head was "why can someone bowl yorkers at will in dead rubber situations yet not access them when under intense pressure?

Then came the ultimate question; "How can we simulate intense pressure in our yorker practices?"

Here are a few options:

1. Fatigue and heart rate

One of the practices that I have seen former England coach Peter Moores do in the past is to simulate pressure by exhausting the body and mind before trying to execute a fine skill.

Peter would get a bowlers heart rate up beyond 150bpm through exercise and then ask them to deliver a yorker.

This is brilliantly relevant. Imagine where Tim Bresnan's heart rate was when delivering those final 3 balls that all went for 4. It was likely to be around 180bpm based on research.

If the only time most bowlers experience this is in matches, then surely we aren’t preparing them optimally?

2. Testing/monitoring

Have you ever felt and noticed what happens when a doctor takes your pulse or monitors your blood pressure? It's called "white coat syndrome". We get nervous, our heart rate raises and anxiety builds effecting our physiology and therefore, impacting on our cognitive processes.

Regular testing, monitoring, comparing of results - yorker league tables are great - will increase the intensity in practice and simulate the pressure of execution under pressurised conditions.

3. Eye Patch target bowling

Get your bowlers to cover one of their eyes with an eye patch and bowl at a yorker target. See which covered eye has the most detrimental effect on performance. Then get them to practice on a regular basis with that eye covered.

This puts the body into a pressurised mode yet the intention is the same: Hit the Yorker.

We are then building a pressurised situation that leads to the body adapting in order to come up with a solution: Exactly what England weren't able to do in the last 8 overs at the Gabba.

What other ways can we help our fast bowlers to execute Yorkers in highly pressurised situations?

Let me know.

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Don't Forget the Tail-Enders at Cricket Nets

Coach Iain Brunnschweiler is standing up for the "lower order run getters" this week, with a brand new "off the shelf" coaching session that gives the tail priority while you have nets.

What gives?

As Mark Garaway often reminds us, everyone in the team bats, and everyone in the team is allowed to score runs, not just the batters. So why shouldn't everyone practice batting?


The problem is that the tail often go last in nets after the bowler is tired and enthusiasm is waning. With little to practice, the default position is to have a swing. Yet the lower order often have a key role to play:

  • support an establish batter to either save a game or eke out a few more runs.
  • hit out to score quickly at the death to win a game

Both of these element require skills that need to be practised. So, why not turn a net session over to the tail and let them bat first for a change?

That's the basic theme "Brunchy" has taken for this week's coaching session, but there is plenty of great stuff for everyone in the squad including drills for improving your lateral movement (both warm up and a fielding drill that will fire up even the most apathetic) and specific work for the wicketkeeper. It's all related to the idea that everyone can practice with purpose.

If you want to make the most of your next hour at nets, click here.

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Cricket Show S5 Episode 2: Hit the Chalk

It's all about the death overs! Mark Garaway joins David Hinchliffe to talk through bowling yorkers under pressure and being a finisher in the mould of Michael Bevan.

And speaking of great work from Australians, we also examine the resurgence of Mitchell Johnson. How exactly did he turn things around? At more grass-roots level, we help a young player with workload and injury problems.

Find out everything on the show by downloading or listening in the browser.


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This is show number 245.

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Become a Cricketer: The Next Great Players will Lead a Measured Life

There is a quiet trend happening around the world: one that is about to become a revolution. This trend will be instrumental in creating the next generation of cricketers. Right now exactly the time to get ahead if you have ambitions to become a cricketer.

Discover How This Cricketer Went From "Floaty" Medium Pace to 90mph Fast Bowler

This is the first in a series of autobiographical articles from former-professional cricketer Steffan Jones. Steffan took himself from a 120kph to 145kph (90mph) with blood, sweat and tears.

I signed my first contract in 1990 and was a professional cricketer for 20 years. The average career of a seam bowler these days is 5 years. In that time I increased my speed. How did I do it?

Here is my story.


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: 291
Date: 2014-01-24