Kovsies Cricket Club opening batsman Wihan Victor played a glorious clip backward of square off Clares Cricket Club opening bowler Brandon Scullard in the Momentum National Club Championships in Pretoria on Sunday 14 April 2019.
Victor offered a one-ball masterclass in hitting to leg when he clipped the fifth balls of Scullard’s opening over backward of square leg to open the scoring. The key to this glorious stroke was down to two technical factors which Victor got just right.
Firstly, he didn’t try to overhit the ball – rather, he waited for it to come onto the bat, using the ball’s pace and momentum to flick it high and handsome to the boundary.
Secondly, he kept a firm foundation on his front foot and stood up straight for as long as he could through the stroke, thereby ensuring he kept a good body position. Had he heaved too hard at the ball he would have been likely to overbalance and, hence, his head and eyes would have moved into a bad position.
Also, the harder you try to hit the ball, the more likely you are to lose control of your technique and, hence, the chances of mistiming the ball increase. Legside shots are best played the way Victor hit this stroke, using the pace of the ball onto the bat – whether you’re hitting on the ground of aerially. Power players will, of course, swing with greater force, but they are most likely to connect sweetly if they hold their technique and position (especially the head) for as long as possible.
Conclusion? When practicing hitting hard and using as much force and bat speed as possible, concentrate on keeping a good body position so that you keep your head and eyes still for as long as you can.
Victor added another boundary before falling for 9 off 12 balls, caught by Khalipha Cele off the bowling of Vyash Gobind, who went on to pick up 3/11 off seven overs as Kovsies collapsed to 144 all out off 44.2 overs. Clares then cruised to victory with 24.2 overs to spare.
The event, which is put together by Cricket South Africa (CSA), encompasses the six outright winners of the Franchise regional play-offs, all playing against each other in a 50-over format.