Tagged: CRICKET

Gift Ideas for Sporty People

Do you have a family member or friend who you are struggling to find a Christmas gift for?

Firstly, do they love sport? Secondly, Do they love a particular sport?

We’ve put together a list of different sports and gift ideas that anyone who plays these sports or wants to start playing would love!

Ps. No harm treating yourself either 😉

Gifts for the Netballer

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  • Netball Stand: At Sportsmart we stock a range of different Netball stands in varying prices, so there is something to suit everyone.
  • Netballs: We stock Mitre and Gilbert Netballs in both size 4 & 5 in a range of different colours and patterns.
  • Netball shoes: Why not treat yourself and purchase from our wide range of Netball shoes, or buy a voucher and let them choose their own.

Gifts for the Soccer Player

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  • Supporter wear: We have a wide range of team supporter wear including: AC Milan, Arsenal FC, Socceroos, Borussia Dortmund, Celtic, Chelsea FC, FC Barcelona, FC Bayern Munich, Juventus, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United, Melbourne Victory, PSG, Real Madrid and Tottenham.
  • Soccer Accessories: We have a wide range of training items available, from: Soccer goals, practice inflatable defence man and markers.
  • Protective wear: Does your child need new shinguard’s or gloves? We’ve got you covered!
  • Soccer balls:  Everyone loves a new ball for Christmas. We stock a range of brands (Mitre, adidas and Nike), colours patterns and all sizes (3, 4 and 5).

Gifts for the Tennis Player

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  • Tennis Balls: Somehow these always end up lost or missing so you can never have enough If you play. Also if you’re heading to the Australian Open, save some time and money and pick yourself up a giant novelty tennis ball for all your signatures!
  • Tennis Racquets: For kids we have Junior racquets for UNDER $50 so these make an awesome gift if your child wants to start playing. We also have a variety of different priced senior racquets as well for the more advanced player.
  • Bags: If you have a few tennis players in the family these bags can be great for storage, or if you have a little pro on your hands then these will make life easier when rushing them off to practice (a gift for the kids or for you? 😉)

Gifts for the Basketballer

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  • BBall Systems:  These make amazing family gifts. We stock a massive range from entry level to top of the range, so we really do have something for everyone. Will your child be the next LeBron James?
  • Basketball Shoes: We have a wide range of junior and senior shoes (and1 and Nike). Spoil yourself or give them a gift card to get your own.
  • Basketballs: We stock a variety of different basketballs suited to both indoor and outdoor playing. Different sizes are available to suit all ages.

 Gifts for the Cricketer

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  • Outdoor Cricket sets: Heading into summer means a lot of time spent at the beach…who doesn’t love beach cricket? Perfect for kids of all ages and even for dads of all ages.
  • Cricket packages: we have some incredible junior cricket packages available that covers just about everything the little cricketer will need for the season.
  • BBL gear: With BBL starting soon grab your supporter wear and even get playing yourself with our awesome light up stumps and balls.
  • Playing Gear: We have everything from bats, padding, bags, clothing and balls. No matter what age or size we’ve got your cricketer covered this Christmas.

How to prepare your cricket bat

At Sportsmart, we offer bat preparation for you:

New natural-faced cricket bats need to be oiled and knocked in before play. The deluxe cricket bat preparation will eliminate hours of manual preparation. Please allow 4-5 business days for this service to be completed.*

If you prefer to do your own bat prep, follow the steps below:

Cricket bats are made primarily from two different types of wood. English Willow or Kashmir Willow. Both are very soft types of wood, and require preparation before they can be used to hit a cricket ball.83154_500

There are four stages involved in preparing your cricket bat:

1. Pressing, 2. Oiling, 3. Knocking In, 4. Playing In.

Stage 1: Pressing

Pressing the bat is important for two reasons. 1) It strengthens the fibers in the bat, and 2) Saves hours off the knocking in process. Some brands already do this stage for you, i.e. Kookaburra (KPP), but it doesn’t hurt to do a little bit more yourself.

Most bat prepping is done using a machine. Or using a mallet to knock it in, however this takes twice as long.

Stage 2: Oiling

Oiling helps reduce the chance that your cricket bat will crack or split. Oiling your bat helps to maintain moisture levels within the bat.

How:

  • Using Linseed Oil, apply a light coat to the face, edge, toe and back of the blade – avoid the stickers and splice area. Allow to dry for 24 hours. Then, using a very fine sand paper (+180), give your cricket bat a light sanding. Reapply a light coat to the face.
  • 2-3 coats should be sufficient. Allow each coat to dry fully (it’s best to dry your cricket bat in a slightly elevated horizontal position).

Stage 3: Knocking In

Knocking-in is probably the most vital stage in the preparation process. This process compresses the fibers in the wood, protecting the bat against ball impact. If done correctly, this can increase a cricket bat’s performance and lifespan.

How:

  • Using a special bat mallet or an old quality cricket ball, carefully and repeatedly strike the bat (increasing the force gradually) in any area where one may hit the ball. The edges and toe should not be struck directly at right-angles to the blade as this can cause damage.
  • This stage should take a minimum of 6 hours (every bat varies).
  • Finally, using an old quality cricket ball, hit some short catches. If the seam, on the ball, leaves a mark, go back and continue knocking in. Allow at least another hour for this stage.

Stage 4: Playing In

This stage is important to determine if you have knocked-in the bat well enough.

How:

  • At this stage, the cricket bat can be used in nets with a soft ball. If the ball contact leaves a mark on the bat, go back and repeat the knocking in process for another hour until no marks are left on the bat.

*Our services should not be considered as full preparation – you still need to work your bat in against an old ball prior to use against new hard balls.

Shop our range of Cricket bats in store and online here.