How ironic that, in today’s bat-dominated world of limited-overs cricket, a bowler – Morné Morkel – gets picked as Man of the Series after the recent round of internationals between South Africa and the visiting Indian side.
No, you haven’t stumbled on to cricscores.com. This is about science (physics, to be specific). Bowling? It’s scientific: managing fluid dynamics, coefficients of friction, and so forth. And so is batting: no batsman gets to the top without an appreciation of the finer points of Mass and Moment of Inertia.
Last Sunday afternoon, the series-deciding game, was an object lesson in the physics of batting, viz: Apply bat to ball. Hard. Repeat ad infinitum.
It was brutal as it was terrifying, and unfortunately for local fans the lesson was being conducted by India’s Yusuf Pathan.
Our bowling (Man of the Series Morkel included) was subjected to a particularly savage pummelling. Pathan, his side apparently tottering to defeat, seemed to make every successive hit harder, fly higher, and travel further. Six followed six. Even when Pathan himself tottered – swapping his stance to a left-hander’s, he was swung off his feet by the force of his own whirling follow-through – the sheer violence of an apparent miscue was still enough to propel the ball over the ropes.
If inventor Marcus Codrington Fernandez is to be believed, it’s a good thing Pathan didn’t have a Mongoose MMi3 bat at his disposal. Given the extravagant claims that are being made for the Codrington Fernandez bat design – claims, to be fair, that are backed up with scientific analysis – the carnage could have been indescribable.
Codrington Fernandez’s bat is designed to maximise the effect of MMi. Simply, it concentrates the bulk of the bat low down, where most of the hitting takes place. Bat gets to ball faster, hits ball harder, ball disappears into the distance.
That’s the theory. Read my interview with Codrington Fernandez, and the science behind a bat that has the potential to shake up traditional ideas about batting, in the February issue of Popular Mechanics – on sale now.
You can also watch a video to see a smashing video starring the Mongoose, a ball and a window… click here
And while you’re at it, get yourself a hard hat. Watching cricket from the grandstands could suddenly become a whole lot more dangerous.