EXCLUSIVE | Cricket Protective Gear – Past, Present & What Ahead

Image source: TWITTER Steve Smith dodges trying to escape a ruthless bouncer.

Strong points

  • Protection in cricket has radically changed the way the game is played.
  • Gaming could well be a completely different sport in a decade or two.

Cricket is one of the fastest growing games in the world. We have different leagues, formats and styles of play which are applied at a fast pace. Gaming could well be a completely different sport in a decade or two. There is, however, one thing that will continue to be part of the game in the future – protective gear.

Protection in cricket has radically changed the way the game is played. Hitters are no longer afraid of rhythm or short balls. Whether it was Maxwell’s outrageous reverse sweep or Pant’s reverse scoop to a fast bowler like Jofra Archer, the confidence of being guarded brought out all the different shots in the book.

India TV spoke with Amit Desai, Founder and Director of Protech Sports & Safety Products pvt. Ltd, for an insight into the world of cricket protective gear, especially helmets. Here are excerpts from the interview.

What has been the evolution of protective equipment in sport? What impact did this have on the manufacturing process?

India Tv - Rishabh Pants |  Picture file

Image source: TWITTERRishabh pants | Picture file

The cricket hard hat has come a long way in terms of shell safety levels and most importantly is the grille. The safety shell was primarily inside the helmet for better concussion management. The grill has completely evolved with the new British standards where the cannonball test requires the grill to be extremely robust to not let the bullet pass through. This development has also made the manufacturing process more rigorous in quality checks and assembly processes.

Do you receive special requests from players for personal needs?

All the time, but with the new BS standards, it’s almost impossible to make any changes to the structure of the helmet, except for a few additions of foam inside the helmet to provide custom comfort for top players.

How do you see this industry evolving and developing in the future?

Cricket activity is growing in some new countries like the United States. They actively promote cricket as a mainstream sport. However, until it becomes a major sport recognized worldwide, it will remain a very small niche market, in terms of player numbers, compared to many other grassroots sports like football, baseball , etc.

With the sport becoming more and more advanced, have you ever thought of innovating?

Indian Television - Suryakumar Yadav |  Picture file

Image source: TWITTERSuryakumar Yadav | Picture file

We are developing a helmet that will help reduce concussions and manage higher levels of impacts as well as multiple impacts at similar points. We partnered with a US-based company for the necessary technology. Some of the early test results are quite promising.

Dinesh Karthik’s helmet looked a bit different during the IPL. Do players prefer to change equipment?

This headset has been in the market for a long time and Dinesh Karthik has been using it in IPL games for about 5 years.

We had developed many different kinds of shapes in the past, but since cricket is an extremely traditional game, cricketers don’t like too much change in designs from a traditional cricket cap shape.

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