Your Bowling Run up
By Peter Bryceson
As a bowler we hate to hear the call "Wide" or "No Ball". Whilst a wide is a line problem which is a subject for another article here is an exacting way to remove the "No Ball" call.
Grab a mate and about 6 cricket balls, (it wont matter what quality) you will need a long tape measure at least say 30 meters. You will also need some thing to mark the ground with the best would be tent pegs if you can get them. Once you have this stuff off to the nearest oval, once you get there just find an area away from everyone as you will be bowling a ball into the open area.
1) Lay the tap measure out along the ground.
2) Measure your normal run up starting at the "0" point of the tape measure.
3) Give the tent pegs or markers to your mate and ask him to stay at around the area where your front foot would generally land. He will be marking next to the tape measure where your foot will land.
4) Now grab the cricket ball and go back to the "0" which is the start of you run up.
5) Line yourself up along side the tape measure and visualise yourself facing the wickets.
6) Close your eyes….commence your run up with your eyes closed and don’t open them until you have bowled the ball.
7) As you start your run up just get the feeling of how relaxed you are, the idea is just to bowl the ball when you feel right.
8) When you front foot lands your mate should be marking where it lands.
9) Repeat this for the next half dozen balls.
10) Once you have completed bowling all the balls you should have 6 markers showing where your front foot has landed. If you have done this correctly you will notice that most are on or about the same spot. You should now be able to tell exactly how long your actual run up is.
11) Stand with your legs together at the marker and walk naturally back to where you started count your steps, and work out whether your final step is half a step or quarter or a foot.
You now should have the exact length of your run up.
On game day or even at training start with your heel just in front of the popping crease this will allow for the occasional variation in your step and measure out your run up. A ‘no ball’ call should now be a thing of the past.
From this point forward you should never need to change the length of your run up unless there is something seriously wrong with your action.
I wonder if anyone has done this with Shoaib Akhtar?
Peter Bryceson is a cricket coach and passionate cricketer from Australia.
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