Why are cricket bats so expensive?
The cost of cricket bats has spiralled in recent years. Some big brands are now charging more than £600 for a top range cricket bat, but can this exorbitant price really be justified?
The short answer, is no... Here's why...
Any bat that is worth using out in the middle should be made from home-grown English willow. Cricketers revere a bat that has lots of straight grains and generally avoid any kind of staining or butterfly willow. As a result, brands inflate the prices of these bats due to their improved aesthetics, but there is no evidence that bats with more grains substantially produce improved ping or performance. In fact, the higher number of grains within a bat means they are more fragile and susceptible to breakages.
Many brands perpetuate this myth to customers to justify inflated prices despite no evidence that supports their claims. What is, in fact, crucial to a bat’s performance is how it’s pressed and the distribution of weight to ensure a good pick-up and feel as well as a large middle.
Another reason for high prices is because big brands use elite professionals to use their kit and pay them handsomely to do so. International players can expect to receive 6 figure sums to use the likes of GM, Adidas or Gray Nicolls. This cost, inevitably, is passed down to the consumer – who can expect to pay a premium to use a bat that mirrors their cricketing idol.
Prices are then increased further by independent retailers who take their cut and add on costs to the consumer.
Whilst this isn’t anything new, it is arguably one of the many factors that is seeing a year-on-year decrease in cricket participation and making our game less and less accessible from people from lower socio-economic backgrounds.
Cricket requires a lot of equipment to play, but it is one of the most inclusive, sociable and supportive sports there is and has immense benefits for wellbeing and enabling you to feel part of a community. It’s saddening to think that a parent may be forced to deny their child an opportunity to become a cricketer due to price barriers.
This is why we set up Prophecy Cricket. As a kit supplier, we ensure that all our prices are reasonable, but we go much further to provide one of the largest and most generous cricket sponsorship schemes from across the market.
Rather than sponsor elite pros, we provide a diverse mix of young, aspiring cricketers from all levels of the game with the opportunity to receive substantial discounts on our kit with our key ambition being to grow the game that we love and to enable everyone to benefit from the best quality equipment possible.
We produce hand-crafted, elite performance bats from home grown English willow at a fraction of the cost of other brands. Similarly, our protective equipment has been carefully designed using the very best materials to offer elite performance.
Furthermore, our cricket club sponsorship scheme helps to provide an opportunity for local community clubs to access fundraising from Prophecy Cricket in exchange for advertising and product sales. Many clubs have already partnered with us to implement this scheme successfully.
This is a different model to the big brands, and undoubtedly our growth will take longer, but it is an ethical model that we feel helps to protect the game we love.
So the next time you go to purchase a new bat - ask yourself what's really important to you...? Is it buying that expensive bat with stickers that a famous player uses? Or buying a hand-crafted bat direct from a smaller retailer who cares about every bat they sell and every cricketer who uses them...?