If you know any junior cricket players, you will know how important it is to play in the best kit with the best equipment. Using the correct equipment is crucial to offer increased protection and support for growing bones and muscles.
So, what does the junior cricket player really need?
Cricket Bat – The first and most important part of a junior cricket players equipment is their bat. It is essential to get one that is the right size and weight. Don’t buy a bat in the mistake of thinking your child will ‘grow into it’ because this is very different for cricket bats. Generally, a junior player should be able to pick a cricket bat comfortably. Different size cricket bats correlate to the size of the player and these go up in weights as well. Below is an approximate cricket bat size guide based on the height of the junior player.
Approximate Bat Sizing Chart
- Height – 4ft, Bat Size – 0
- Height – 4ft – 4ft 3”, Bat Size – 1
- Height – 4ft 3” – 4ft 6”, Bat Size – 2
- Height – 4ft 6” – 4ft 9”, Bat Size – 3
- Height – 4ft 9” – 4ft 11”, Bat Size – 4
- Height 4ft 11” – 5ft 2”, Bat Size – 5
- Height 5ft 2” – 5ft 4”, Bat Size – 6
- 5ft 4” – 5ft 6”, Bat Size – H
Footwear – There are two different types of cricket shoes. One that had a textured rubber sole and one that has spikes. The rubber textured sole cricket shoes are the best option for junior players because they can be used on artificial surfaces like Astroturf. Cricket shoes with spikes are good for fast bowlers and juniors who are playing hard ball cricket because it offers added grip on grass and in wet conditions. However, spiked cricket shoes cannot be worn on artificial turf pitches (or in dressing rooms) so a pair of rubber soled cricket shoes will be needed as well.
Batting Pads – Batting pads are worn by the junior batter to protect their legs from injury if it is impacted with the cricket ball. Cricket balls can travel at speeds to up to 100mph so these are necessary! Usually, the more expensive the batting pad the more protective, light, and comfortable they are.
Wicket Keeping Pads – The wicket keeper also wears pads, and these can be normal batting pads or specialist wicket keeping pads. These are usually shorter and lighter, so it makes it easier for the junior player to move around.
Cricket Helmet – The helmet is also a very important aspect of a cricketer’s equipment. Hardball cricket cannot be played without a cricket helmet because without the cricket ball may cause concussions, irreversible facial injuries and permanent damage. It is important that the Helmet adheres to the 2013 British Standard and Australian Standard.
Abdo Guard – An Abdo guard or a ‘box’ is used to protect the crotch area between the legs. Boys are not allowed to bat in hardball cricket without using one as cricket balls can cause severe damage at high speeds. For them to fit securely a pair of cricket boxers or box briefs should be purchased as well.
Gloves – The hands of the batter are the most vulnerable part because that is very close to where the cricket ball is being aimed. Most hand and finger injuries occur whilst batting, therefore the batting gloves offer the batter protection from mistimed shots which can lead to the ball crushing the hand against the handle of the bat. Generally speaking, the more expensive the glove, the better the protection and the comfort.
Thigh Pads – All players should use thigh pads because being hit with a cricket ball is extremely painful, even for adults. They can come in two styles, the first is just a plain pad, but the second type of thigh pad is an all in one inner and outer protector. The second option is more popular and more protective.