MCC takes a decision on the use of bamboo bats suggested by Cambridge University

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  • MCC reached a conclusion on the use of bamboo bats recommended by Cambridge University.

  • Bamboo bat prototypes are lighter and stronger than the currently used willow bats.

MCC takes a decision on the use of bamboo bats suggested by Cambridge University
Cricket Bats ( Image Source: Twitter)

Cricket is the world’s second most popular sport after football. The first-ever international cricket contest was played between England and Australia in 1877. The game has evolved ever since with numerous changes including amendments in the fielding restrictions, introducing newer formats and evolution of the cricket bats from sturdy willow hardwood to sapwood by the end of the nineteenth century.

Cambridge University suggested one such modification when they asked the Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) to change the material used in making cricket bats from willow to bamboo.

According to research at the Centre for Natural Material Innovation, bamboo bats would be lighter, stronger and offer a larger ‘sweet spot’- the point from which the ball takes the maximum acceleration.

While makers have favoured the English willow for two centuries, researchers found that the bamboo prototype bats were as twice as strong as those made of willow, which meant that new bats introduced could be thinner and lighter.

They also discovered that the sweet spot in bamboo bats was larger than that in willow and was positioned close to the toe of the bat, giving the batters an advantage of tackling deadly yorkers.

However, in a statement on Monday, the Guardian of the games declined the proposal arguing that the law only allows for the use of wood in a cricket bat. In contrast, bamboo is a specific genus of grass.

“Currently, law 5.3.2 states that the blade of the bat must consist solely of wood, so for bamboo (which is a grass) to be considered as a realistic alternative to willow would require a law change,” MCC stated.

MCC added that even if changes were incorporated to label bamboo as wood, the modification in bats would be illegal since it bans lamination of blades except in junior bats.

“Importantly, the law would need to be altered to allow bamboo specifically, as even if it were to be recognised as wood, this would still be illegal under the current law, which bans lamination of the blade, except in junior bats,” the Governing Body explained.

Expounding further, MCC also pointed out that they were trying to maintain the balance between the ball and bat, which would swing towards the batsmen if they could easily counter toe-crushers with the new material.

“MCC’s role as Guardian of the Laws includes maintaining the balance between bat and ball, and any potential amendments to the Law would need to carefully take this into consideration, particularly the concept of the bat producing greater power,” the apex body concluded.

MCC made headline in another issue when they denied erecting a statue of former England women cricketer Rachel Flint at Lords.

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About the Author:
Ritvan is an avid cricket fan who loves watching and playing cricket. Cricket is not only his favourite sport but also his passion. You can write to him at and follow him on Twitter, LinkedIn, and Facebook.