World Twenty20 Lessons: How to Bowl and Field in Wet Conditions | Cricket coaching, fitness and tips

World Twenty20 Lessons: How to Bowl and Field in Wet Conditions

Do you recognise this?

Bowlers have bowling with soaking wet balls, drying the ball on a towel kept in the back your trousers and fielders throwing the ball sideways as the ball slips out of their hands. Anyone who has played club cricket will know all about these kinds of challenge.

You are not alone: exactly the same issues plagued international teams in the World Twenty20.

So how can we all thrive in wet conditions?

Bob balls in water

Ex-Ireland and present South Africa Assistant Coach, Adi Birrell used to put cricket balls in buckets of water to get them soaking wet before asking the bowlers to bowl the ball in practice.

He did this because many games of cricket in Ireland are rain effected. At the time Ireland's international grounds did not have "super-soppers" or big ropes to disperse rainwater from the outfield. Therefore, he challenged his players to become world leaders with a wet ball.

Bowlers such as Trent Johnston increased their skills hugely in these practices. Ireland would then relish the opportunity to bowl similar match conditions. They knew that their bowling unit were better prepared than the opposition.

Get some old balls, a bucket and some water and try this in your net practices.

Turn back of a length into your yorker

It's difficult to land the yorker in normal conditions when under pressure. To do this with a wet ball pushes the odds significantly in the batter's favour. That's why we we saw the seam bowlers in the World T20 shifting their lengths at the death from attempted yorkers (with a wet ball) to back of a length.

You can do exactly the same: Try to hit the pitch harder and bring your lengths back.

This not only gives you a larger margin for error but also brings different reactions from the playing surface. A wet ball on a skiddy wicket is less predictable. It has been noticeable that batters have been hurried when seamers have shifted their lengths accordingly.

Bowl and throw cross seam

The number of cross seam deliveries has increased as bowlers have tried to find a way of gaining more control in the wet conditions. The more seam that comes into contact with the fingers the more stable the release position with the wet ball.

Your bowler's control increases and they are able to bowl to their fields so much better. This has been one of the reasons why the batting totals have dipped during the World Twenty20.

Fielders can learn from this also. Encourage the fielder to take a split second and ensure that the ball is placed in the hand correctly before hurling it at the target. Again, the accuracy and power will increase as a better grip is established.

The ball will move faster than the man who you are trying to run out so, take your time and then 'unleash hell' with your throw.

What have you noticed about the World Twenty20 that you can take to your games?

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