Techniques - by Kelvin Lingard.
plays for a local suburban team each week and represents
Townsville in the men's B state competition).
keeper is one of the most valuable fielders in the game. A
good understanding between the Wicket keeper and the receiver
at the other end of the wicket can achieve a lot of
dismissals. With a few good deliveries, a good wicket keeper
can turn a game very quickly.
indoor cricket is a very specialized position and takes a lot
of skill and practice. It differs from outdoor keeping in
several major aspects -
keeper in indoor cricket must stand right at the stumps for
all bowlers, fast and slow
fielders are all close to the pitch, which means that the
keeper's reaction time is for the most part very short (for
balls returned to him)
- He must
have one hand free to throw, which means wearing a catching
glove on one hand and on the other a throwing glove, or no
glove at all.
these conditions and the speed of the game, it is easy for a
keeper to sustain injury. The best way to avoid injury is to
develop good, safe techniques. I have provided below some of
my own techniques for good wicket keeping. These have been
developed over many years and will, hopefully, not only
prevent injury but also help improve wicket-keeping skills.
It is important to try to field every ball that is bowled. My
aim is to glove every ball that beats the bat. I pretend that
I have no net behind me and concentrate on the ball. This
requires pretty much 100% effort but with concentration and
persistence I find it has improved my game considerably.
The best way to position yourself is in a squat, with your
"inner" foot in line with off-stump. This remains the same for
both left and right handed batsmen, however, depending on the
batsman's stance you may need to vary it a little to retain a
clear view of the ball's path.
Hands are cupped on the pitch and close to the stumps.
As the bowler prepares to bowl, I stay crouched, hands cupped
out in front and elbows bent a little. Hands should stay on
the pitch until just before the bounce. I stay low to judge
the bounce of the ball; I rise slowly as the bowler approaches
but still only to a crouched position with hands still cupped
Without crossing my feet, I slide a little from either side of
the wicket. When I receive the ball in my glove I move toward
the direction of the stumps to increase my chances of a
For a normal bounce, I always have my hands cupped, fingers
pointing down a little. Balls that bounce higher, at around
eye level, are best taken with fingers pointing upwards.
You should keep your head in a comfortable position but, as
much as possible, in line with the ball. It is most important
not to snatch at the ball. If your head is in the right
position, your eyes will be able to follow the ball and you
can let it drop into your hands.
When you catch the ball, have your elbows bent, let your arms
give a little and take the ball back to absorb some of the
shock and avoid injury and the probable loss of the ball.
First of all, it is important not to get too excited or rushed
when the batsman dashes out of the crease as this will bring
about a mistake.
For a ball that bounces at wicket height, I keep slightly
crouched (low). For a ball that pitches at close range to the
wickets, like a Yorker, a full pitch delivery or when its
almost at your gloves, I would have my feet spread a little
and elbows bent then its like a scooping method from either
side of my body. For a ball that pitches a high bounce,
firstly, get there! You will probably need to be in a standing
position. With hands cupped and fingers pointing upwards, take
the ball and just bring it down to the stumps. I position
myself in line with the ball or slightly to the side,
depending on the delivery.
It is important to be patient (don't snatch) and watch the
ball right into your gloves. When the ball has been received,
take the bails off quickly, try to operate in easy reach of
your stumps at all times. A technique I use when I find myself
away from stump reach is a one-handed technique. I receive the
ball, quickly transfer it to the hand nearest the stumps and
then take the bails off.
You can lose an opportunity to stump by over reacting. If this
happens, you will find the ball will hit your fingers and
bounce away. Do not give up if this happens! Stay alert for a
second play at the stumps. Make sure you get in position to
receive flicks or throws from front court fielders and other
fielders. I like to stay low for these attempts. (ICW:
we couldn't agree more with Kelvin here--there's
nothing bugs a front-court fielder more than a 'keeper who
leaps out from behind the stumps and isn't there to take a
quck flick back at the stumps).
This is one of the hardest to perform, though with the correct
techniques, it can be easy.
My technique is to stay low (crouching position), depending on
the bounce of the ball that is bowled, and, as always, keep
hands in front with fingers cupped. Judge the line of the ball
and it's bounce. From this stance, slide foot to foot across
to receive the ball. The foot-to-foot sideways slide technique
helps you maintain balance and puts you in a good position to
receive the ball.
The biggest problem with leg side takes is that you lose sight
of the ball because of the batsman's position. Therefore, you
must anticipate and move to be in the right spot to receive
the ball as soon as it arrives. Good anticipation and regular
practice of this move will enable you to sight the ball as
early as possible thus giving you a better opportunity to
remove the bails and stump the batsman should he be out of his
If you find yourself too far away from the stumps, as
sometimes happens in getting yourself in line with the ball,
simply transfer the received ball into the hand closest to the
stumps and remove the bails. In performing this action,
remember to maintain your crouched position with hands out in
front and do not cross your feet. In this way, you should
receive the ball cleanly and be able to take off the bails.
AND RUN OUT THROWS
The keeper is responsible for a large amount of run outs at
the receivers end. To do this, the keeper takes the ball
cleanly, attempts a stumping, then returns the ball to the
receiver to run-out the non-striker. A good strong and
accurate throwing technique is essential.
I aim to receive the ball and be balanced when throwing it to
the receiver. The technique I use involves using all of the
shoulder and back muscles. Don't throw with your arm only! A
side arm throw standing front on action could lead to injury.
When I throw I try to keep my arm bent with the ball at level
with my head, keeping it close to my ear. Step forward front
leg out a little. This gives you more power and uses all of
the muscles in the shoulder and back. From this stance, throw
I like to throw a bounce ball to the receiver so he/she can
receive the ball cleanly and effect the run out. Sometimes a
full throw is needed, but this is faster and therefore harder
for the receiver to take. The technique I use when throwing is
specifically to prevent injury. When I was younger I threw
incorrectly - using just my arm and throwing hard. This led to
injury. The injury was fixable though I have to be careful to
use the correct technique to keep my arm in good condition.
So, I can not stress enough how important it is to be well
balanced when throwing and to use all of your muscles, not
just your arm.
Finally, my most important tip of all is to stretch before,
during breaks in the game and after the game. This prevents
sore muscles, injury and loosens you up so you can play
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