Every time it rains I thank the forethought of West of Scotland to have an indoor net. The members might complain about it's fast pace and short run ups but it undoubtedly better than watching it rain.
So, in this session, after 20 minutes in the wet with incrediballs to get some fielding done, we went inside for a session on the bowling machine.
The outdoor drill was designed to get the heart rate up. A pair were asked to perform three skills in a row: chase down and return, take a catch and take a low catch.
The variation was that I had two Katchets set up in a line so I could hit a ball onto them with the new Skyer (we bought this week). It flew! The feedback was also encouraging. The players loved the challenge.
Once indoors we ran an open net against bowlers and a net with the machine set round the wicket swinging in to the right hander. I chatted to players about their intention, as always, before going in to the net. This time I spent more attention on making sure we got the intention spot on and was clearer about what I thought was right when a player was unsure. This worked much better than just saying "do what you like".
Most players worked with me on the machine on a technical point: staying more open and learning to hit the ball through mid on off the front foot. I saw some kind of progress with every player, including four guys who were able to hit away swing through mid on while still playing straight. That takes awesome balance.
To make sure the bowlers had a goal too, I set down a generously sized length area. In the nets the bowlers tend to bowl too short so I told them to hit the length target and keep score of how many they hit during the session. This was also stuck to relatively well and the ball was pitched up more.
- The good: Clearer planning of intention in the nets, group worked well together with focus.
- Needs work: I wasn't able to monitor the open net as I was running the machine. Possibly encourage another player to take more of a coaches role.