Knocking-in is an essential process for preparing a new cricket bat for use. It involves compressing the fibers of the willow wood to make it more durable and prevent it from cracking or splitting during use. Here are some important things to know about knocking-in:
Why Knocking-In is Important
Knocking-in is essential for two reasons:
– To protect the bat from cracking and increase its usable life.
– To improve the middle of the bat so that it is bigger and better.
A new cricket bat has a soft surface that needs to be hardened and conditioned to withstand the impact of a cricket ball. Knocking-in helps to compress the fibers of the willow wood and make it more durable. It also helps to improve the middle of the bat, making it more effective for hitting the ball.
How to Knock-In a Cricket Bat
Knocking-in a cricket bat is a time-consuming process that requires patience and attention to detail. Here are the steps involved:
1. Use a specialized mallet to hit the face of the bat. Start with light taps and gradually increase the force over time. The aim is to compress the fibers of the willow wood without causing any damage.
2. Once the face of the bat is knocked-in, move on to the edges. Use the mallet to replicate the glancing blows the bat would receive during an innings. Hold the bat at a 45-degree angle and flick the mallet across the edges.
3. After the edges are knocked-in, move on to the toe and the back of the bat. Use the mallet to compress the fibers of the willow wood in these areas.
4. Repeat the process for at least six hours, or until the bat feels hard and sounds solid when tapped.
Professional Knocking-In Services
While knocking-in a cricket bat can be done at home, it is recommended to have it done professionally. Professional bat-makers have the expertise and equipment to knock-in a bat correctly and ensure that it is ready for use. They can also advise on the best way to care for and maintain the bat.
Difference in Knocking-In for English Willow and Kashmir Willow Bats
There is a difference in knocking-in for English willow and Kashmir willow bats. English willow bats are made from high-quality wood and require more knocking-in than Kashmir willow bats. They also need to be oiled more frequently to keep the wood supple and prevent it from drying out. Kashmir willow bats are less expensive and require less knocking-in and oiling.
In conclusion, knocking-in is an essential process for preparing a new cricket bat for use. By following the steps above, you can ensure that your bat is durable, effective, and ready for the cricket field.