For all those young cricketers sitting at home, these can be troubling times. One can’t step out to have a hit or practice at all because of the coronavirus. And if you can’t feel bat on the ball, it just doesn’t feel right.
But perhaps the greatest batsman of our times, Donald Bradman, has a remedy for the problem.
The Don famously grew up hitting a golf ball off a water tank with a stump. He would practice for hours until he was finally able to control the shot and the direction the ball would go in.
Englishman Tony Shillinglaw, who wrote the book Bradman Revisited in 2003, spent 30 years attempting to unlock the secret of what made Bradman so far above anyone before or since and he was at a loss as to why The Don’s fabled style of boyhood training method isn’t more widely adopted.
“We found out that the key was the golf ball and stump — the ability to hit it and control it,” Shillinglaw told cricket.com.au in 2017.
“Bradman learned to control a fast, erratic, moving ball better than anyone else has ever done, and all I’ve discovered is you can’t do it from an orthodox style.
“We were trying to locate the cause and the cause is the water tank and stand — an eight-foot space, golf ball and stump at Shepherd Street (Bradman’s childhood home).
“That’s where Don Bradman got his skill from.”
Bradman’s technique landed him 6996 Test runs in 52 Tests at an average of 99.94.
Here’s a video of Bradman showing just how he used to practice as a child. It is a must-watch: