AOC Coaching: Keeping Drills

Simon Guy, ECB Level 4 Coach and former Yorkshire wicketkeeper, talks us through some quick training drills every keeper should know.

Get your coach to feed you balls at pace off a Katchet. Stand the distance you would stand from the batsman and take lots of balls one after the other, making sure your feet, head and hands are working as they should be.

As before, but this time stand within a yard of the Katchet, testing your hands, reactions and balance at close range.

Up to the wicket steep bounce is tricky, as reaction time is limited. Stand a couple of metres from your coach while they throw underarm catches from the floor up to your shoulder height. Catch every ball with your left hand, maintaining a solid base. When it’s on your right side, your hips and waist will pivot as you adjust. After a couple of minutes switch to your right hand. This drill will enable you to bring both hands up to the right height to take a steeply rising ball while standing up.

Something that players don’t do enough of is keep when there’s a batsman at the wicket. But if you just keep in the nets, you might not take many balls. Try using a dummy batsman, who’s not there to hit the balls the coach feeds but just plays shots inside the line – to get you used to the swing of the blade while you focus on the ball. You can even use a home-made training aid: a thin bat with a wider sheet of floppy plastic attached to the face – the ball will flick off this plastic creating the effect of an edge – which is a good thing to get used to – but still giving you a catch every ball of practice.

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