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Sight Screen

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Bats out of hell

Interesting piece in the Guardian, about the new-fangled bats modern players favor.

It's beginning to bother the ICC, which in typical fashion has come up with some 'recommendations' that make everything as clear as mud.

Malcolm Speed summed it all up with this line: 'The committee upheld the view that cricket should remain a battle between a wooden bat and leather ball with the members strongly of the opinion that innovations that enhance the striking power of a bat should not be permitted.'

A touch ironic, that the same press release that contained this call for status quo ante also suggests innovations like the introduction of football-style substitutions -- I mean, why not a statement that goes 'The ICC firmly believes that cricket was, is and should remain a contest between two sides comprising 11 players each, and what works for soccer does not necessarily have to be introduced into cricket'?

Point being, just what is wrong with innovations in bat technology anyways? I remember this debate centering around tennis racquets, when the wooden paddles favored by the Bjorn Borgs of this world began to be outhit -- and, eventually, got outmoded -- by the graphite-powered models of today.

Why not with cricket? Why not, within limits, permit innovation? I'm frankly curious to know what you guys think -- comments, please?

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