January 5, 2009

Double-sided bat to debut

Brydon Coverdale

Most reverse-sweeps still come off the front of the bat - Andrew Symonds' version of the stroke being an exception - but batsmen could soon have the option of using the back of their blade. A double-sided bat will be trialled during two Australian domestic Twenty20 games this week.

David Warner, the New South Wales batsman who has just signed up for the IPL, will use the bat against South Australia at the Adelaide Oval on Tuesday and Victoria's Aiden Blizzard will test it against Western Australia at the MCG on Thursday. Warner had a hit with the new-style bat in the SCG nets on Sunday and he said he didn't think it would significantly change the game.

"Generally when I'm playing the reverse I'm swapping hands, and now I don't really have to so it's going to be better. It gives you a couple of extra seconds," Warner told the Age. "If people think it's going to be an advantage to batsmen, I have to disagree.

"The person who is using the timber is in control, so I just see it as another shot for other people to try as well. Everyone is trying it these days, especially in Twenty20, so why not have the back of the bat flat as well? It makes it easier, but it's not a real advantage. You've still got to play the shot."

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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