All of Prenter Cricket's bats are hand crafted by Ben Prenter who is an Accredited Bat Maker and can be customised to suit your specific requirements which will enhance your game, resulting in more runs for that bat owner.
Below is a comprehensive Cricket Bat Selection Guide which will assist you in ensuring that you choose the right bat that best suits your game style.
To get the best out of your game you need to ensure that you select the right bat. The right size, style and weight all contribute to performance, as does the position of the sweet spot.
At Prenter Bats, we like to discuss the type of bat that you used successfully in the past and the type of bat that you want before we begin to hand craft your new bat. Choosing the correct bat will make a huge difference to your game, and we know how to make a bat that best suits the style you play.
Selecting Your Bat
When selecting your bat, we suggest that you give consideration to the weight and length of the bat, as well as its handle. A bat’s pick up or balance should also be considered as this will alter the bat speed and therefore affect your ability to play some shots. You should also consider the positioning of the sweet spot – it could be high, low or in a standard position.
If you do not already have a preference then please use the Sizing Chart and Bat Profile Ranges as a guide to then email us with your details. If you are unsure and require some assistance then please send us as many details as possible, the more details you provide, the better the advice you will receive about the best bat to suit your game style.
Will You Need Two Bats?
Many players ask us whether they need two or more bats. This can depend on the level of cricket that you are playing, your personal preference, how hard you hit the ball and also how often you use your bat.
Top players always have a number of bats, but they are making a living from the game and their bat is their livelihood.
Some players like to have a couple of bats that are very similar, so if one breaks they have another one ready to go that they are comfortable with and is ready for immediate use. Others like to have different bats to use depending on the form they are in (usually a lighter bat when they are in form, and a slightly heavier bat for when they are not, as this heavier bat allows them to get more value from shots that they do not middle. When they get back in form, they will return to the lighter bat that gives them more shot options.)
Because the weight of your cricket bat impacts the way you bat, selecting the weight of the bat is crucial to maximising your stroke performance.
A heavy bat with a lot of wood in the middle will often hit the ball a lot further than a lighter bat. However, a lighter bat will have a faster bat speed meaning that you are more likely to hit the ball in the middle.
While the bat’s weight is determined by personal preference, the following are general recommendations based on your position in the batting order.
These are to be used as a rough guide only because at the end of the day it comes down to personal preference.
A lighter bat is recommended (usually in the region of 2lbs7ozs to 2lbs9ozs.) This is due to the faster bat speed required when facing the new ball that moves around. A heavier bat means that there will be a slightly slower reaction time, which can be the difference between playing the ball too early or too late.
Nos. 3 & 4
A slightly heavier weighted bat would often be required due to the need to implement a more aggressive style, whilst still retaining the balance needed for facing faster bowlers. (2lbs8ozs to 2lbs10ozs)
Nos. 5, 6 & 7
Generally you require a very large profile so that when you hit out the ball is sure to travel beyond the boundary. A good weight range for a middle order player would be 2lbs10ozs to 2lbs12ozs.
Nos. 8 & 9
This depends on your build and what feels comfortable for you. Players tend to use bats of around 2lbs12ozs, sometimes with a longer blade (depending on your height). In these positions you are often required to stay at the crease for long periods of time so it is not necessarily required to have a big heavy bat.
Nos. 10 & 11
These are very crucial batting positions as you may find yourself in a position where you are needed to score the winning runs. If you find that you are a pretty good timer of the ball and like the heavy bat (3lbs +) when in the throes of the final over, then a good balanced bat is crucial due to the way it improves your timing. If you feel that the bat has to be light and you cannot use a heavier bat well, we would recommend one in the region of 2lbs10ozs. Do make sure that the bat length is correct though.
Lower order batsmen should be particular about the bat they use. Being in the lower order means you need every advantage you can get. Lower order batsmen often do not have the skill that those batting up the order have and using the correct bat can dramatically improve your batting performance.
Sometimes players may find that they like a particular weight, shape or length, for instance a player may prefer a longer blade due to the fact this will help with their back pain or if they are looking to make themselves stand up straighter. As a rule of thumb, if you normally use a 2lbs8oz bat in a standard short handle size, the weight for a long blade would be 2lbs9ozs. This is due to the extra length right at the toe of the bat. It will also feel more ‘toe heavy’ than what you are used to, as the extra length moves the bat’s ‘centre of gravity’ further away from your hands. The same principles apply to a long handled bat due to pushing the weight further away from your hands.
Note: Despite all of these recommendations, players will have different preferences. Please contact us to talk about these so that we can be sure that your bat is hand crafted to your specifications. The more information we have about you, the easier it is for us to make you the correct bat and ensure your satisfaction.
Bat speed is the speed that the bat travels to hit the ball. Generally the faster the bat speed, the more likely the batsman is to hit the ball with the middle of the bat. This allows a batsman to be able to make slight adjustments to a shot when the ball deviates, or when they have made a misjudgment or error in execution.
The following factors can influence bat speed
Length of Bat
The length of the bat impacts on bat speed in several areas. The longer the bat, the further away from the hands the weight / sweet spot becomes. The further away from the hands the weight is and the heavier the bat feels. A long bat or a bat with a low sweet spot will have a slower bat speed than a shorter bat or a bat with a higher sweet spot.
A longer bat will also travel further from the top of the pickup to the point of impact. This reduces the bat speed, meaning it takes slightly longer to reach the point of impact.
Weight of Bat
Heavier bats have a slower bat speed than lighter bats. The effort required to move the bat increases as the weight of the bat increases.
A lighter bat will allow faster bat speed and increase the chance of middling the ball. A heavier bat will not be quite as easy to middle the ball with, but when you connect with the ball, it will stay hit.
This topic is one that has come up in our Cricket Bat Lore Newsletter. In the thirties batsmen used very light and slightly smaller bats – their style of play differed from the style of play of the modern batsman.
A bat that has an even weight distribution will have a faster bat speed than a bat that has its weight near the toe. Put another way, this means that a heavier bat with a good distribution of weight will have a faster bat speed than a light bat with a lot of weight in the toe.
Balance & Pick-up
Balance or pick-up describes the bat’s ‘centre of gravity’. If the bat’s ‘centre of gravity’ is too close to the handle the pick-up is quite poor. If the centre of gravity is approximately 8 inches from the shoulder, then the pick-up should be good. We do not advocate measuring for the centre of gravity – you should test the pick up using the method described below.
To test the pick-up of your bat, hold it in your top hand and lift it using your normal pick up. If the bat feels heavy then the pick-up is not great. If it is easy to pick up and the bat does not feel heavy then you have a bat with good balance and pick-up.
A bat with a good pick-up will allow for a better bat speed than a bat with a poor pick-up.
What does all of this mean?
Like the selection of any sporting equipment, there is a compromise to make. For bats this compromise is between fast bat speed and having a bat that has enough middle to get the ball to the boundary.
Fast bat speed allows adjustments to a shot whist it is being made as well as encouraging all different types of shots.
Heavier bats slow the bat speed down, but have more mass behind the ‘middle’ meaning that the ball will travel further when hit properly.
Simply put, the batsman has to decide whether they want a bat with lots of weight that will hit the ball a long way when it connects, or a bat that is lighter and allows you to hit the ball in the middle more consistently. Most players end up taking a middle path, selecting a bat with an average weight (2’9” to 2’11).
When emailing about bat specifications please provide as much information as possible about your game. The more information you send the easier it is for us to recommend the correct size, weight, balance and style of bat for you.
The table below provides a rough guide to the length of bat that most cricketers of a given height will find suits their game. This may vary according to individual preference.
The rationale behind this is a Long Handle dramatically alters the centre of gravity of the bat, which alters the pickup and bat speed. This usually means having a lighter bat to compensate for the longer handle.
Long Blades are a better option than a Long Handle. A Long Blade has an extra half an inch to an inch in the blade (more on request), and does not alter the pick up as much as a long handle does. A long blade encourages you to stand up straighter when taking guard, which may or may not help your game.
Long Handle/ Long Blade is only recommend for the very tall and possibly suffer from back problems. Ben Prenter is 6’3” and uses a long blade, mainly because it is very difficult to get a Long Handle/ Blade that feels good.
When emailing about bat specifications please provide as much information as possible about your game. The more information you send the easier it is to recommend the correct size, weight, balance and style of bat for you.
Bat Profile Ranges
Prenter Bats can make bats to almost any shape you like; we can copy your old favourite or even come up with a slightly different shape that you think will suit your game.
By hand crafting our bats we are able to alter the profile in many ways, including having a high, medium or low sweet spot, changing the edges and scalloping out the back of the blade. We can also make traditional profiles or the more modern shape.
Below is a rough description of the profiles and how they can benefit your batting style. These should be used as a guide only as they can be altered best to suit your requirements.
HIGH PROFILE –
Bats with high profile middles are typically used on bouncy wickets by batsmen who like to hook, pull and cut. These bats will generally have a light pick up.
STANDARD PROFILE –
Arguably, the most common cricket bat profile in the market place. A profile where mishit/mistimed shots are given more forgiveness. These bats have quite a good pick up as the weight is distributed evenly throughout the mid-section of the blade.
LOW PROFILE –
Used predominantly on low slow (Sub Continental) wickets by batsmen who play in the “V” and drive the ball a lot. These bats will pick up quite differently to the high and standard profile bats due to the majority of the weight being positioned lower in the blade.