Inspired by a strong Gayle
KENT ALL-ROUNDER MAKES BIG IMPACT AFTER SWITCHING HIS BAT
Chris Gayle’s stunning unbeaten 151 not out off 62 balls for Somerset against Kent in the Nat-West T20 Blast inspired Spitfires all-rounder Matt Coles to change his bat.
And the decision to use a bigger one paid off when Coles produced his own batting pyrotechnics against Surrey at the Kia Oval last Thursday.
He played an innings the West Indian master blaster would have been proud of, smashing nine sixes and seven fours during his remarkable 73-ball 100 in the Royal London One-Day Cup quarter-final.
However, despite an innings that should have been good enough to win any game, Coles, like Gayle against Kent at Taunton in May, finished on the losing side.
Although he was disappointed with the 17-run defeat, Coles was happy with the decision to go along the lines of using a bat like one of the biggest hitters of the modern era.
He said: “It was amazing watching Chris hit the ball so cleanly and so far that day, so when we went in their changing room afterwards, I had a look and feel of his bat.
“It had a longer blade to what I am used to but it felt real good.
“So, as we are a pretty similar build and height, I thought I would get one made by my bat-makers and give it a go. It was worth a try.
“The extra length gives you a bit more leverage and it didn’t go too bad on Thursday.
But will Coles be using the bat, which left his previous best one-day effort of 47 way behind, on a regular basis for the rest of the season?
He said: “I certainly won’t be using it in the nets – you don’t want to damage it when it doesn’t really count.
“You always try to stick to using the same bat but you have to manage your bats like your body with your workload.”
Matt Coles, who hit 100 against Surrey last Thursday and, inset, Chris Gayle