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Every good bat can make a good connection with the ball if you aim it right, but in order to do that, you need to have complete control over the bat and know about it. The majority of bats come with grips already attached - it makes it a lot easier to use it straight away, and applying a grip is one of the fiddliest things about getting ready to bat.
Upfront have an ELITE range of grips, and as they are a company that I rate quite highly, I had no reason to think their grips would be anything but good quality. The grips come in a variety of colours, and once you have fought with the bat handle and managed to squeeze the grip on (usually with a cone or other device for doing this) then you can test the grip out.
I guess it depends what sort of batsman you are in order to buy the right grip, but one of the most favoured tends to be the 'octopus' which provides a number of patterned grips that are good whether you're wearing gloves or not. Naturally, when you're playing, you should have the gloves on anyway, but in terms of practice this doesn't always happen or isn't practical or handy, and it's then that I notice the power of the grip on the grip...
Wristy players will benefit from this, as a lot of turning and twisting can create force on the connection between glove and handle as you try and manipulate the ball with angles from the bat. This particular grip manages this treatment quite well, making sure to keep that connection. You can feel a slight amount of give as the two surfaces work in opposite directions to each other, but then as the shot finishes, the balance is restored and you don't feel as if you have almost let go of the bat.
With the heavier straighter shots, the grip is just as good, showing that arced and curved movement as well as straight movement is well covered by this grip. Once it's on the bat, it doesn't slip towards the edge and try to come off like a lot of the cheapest grips can do. Basically, if you're paying £1 or £2 for a grip, then the chances are it will be bog standard and you are likely to need a secondary grip underneath it anyway. Some may say that it's a good idea to have a secondary grip underneath this one to balance it out and provide safer application, but I haven't found this necessary.
Ultimately, this is a quality product from Upfront. On amazon, you can currently get this for under £5, which is a very good price. I highly recommend it.
There are hundred of cricket grips. Everyone has there favourite type of grips. Personally i like spiral grips. The grip pictured above is an octopus. I will go through a few of the most popular types and explain why they are good or not so good.
Spiral; my favourite, thick grip with spirals around. Fills out the hands and is very cushioned. Possible disadvantages is that its not the "grippiest" grip.
Octopus; like the pictured one it has tiny suctions on it to grip the gloves well. The grip is fairly thin and can be prone to ripping. The grip is exceptional and when used with another thin grip underneath it would be very good.
Chevron; a simple thin bat grip that has tiny lines all over it to make the grip. Great to use as a grip put on underneath another. Prone to ripping, but not as much as octopus.
Studded; another simple bat grip almost identical to the chevron except it has little studs on it rather than lines.
Ribbed; A grip with lumps all the way up for added grip. A mixture of chevron and spiral it is fairly normal thickness between spiral and chevron. A very good grip if no particular preference is made.
Its hard to give a grading to so i give a 5 stars as they are all very good and none of them cost a lot. Around £3.50 max a grip but can be as low as £0.50. Will only go through maybe 3 a season at most.
Combination; can find some grips that are combinations of 2 of the types above, most popular are half spiral half chevron or half chevron half ribbed.
White cricket grips get very dirty so best of going for another colour
In my time from doing refurbishments on club mates bats over the last couple of years, I have found that the best grip on the market is the Octopus style grips. They are made to act like suckers, with the air being trapped between your glove and the holes, causing a sucking effect. They give better grip than any grip I have seen or used. They are very good quality too. Not only do they last at least a whole season, they also are very easy to applt to the bat taking ruffly only 2 minutes maximum when using a standard gripping cone. Unfront have many grips on offer, all of good quality but this one stands out. If you look about you will be able to find this style of grip in your favourite colour ranging from red to blue to yellow to black. You name it, its on the market!
I have found the Upfront bat grips to be of a very good quality. They use soft supple rubber and the grips are clearly made in england rather that in India like most cheap grips!
The grip pictured is called an octopus grip and I recently ordered 10 of these, they arrived very quickly (I think it was two days after ordering), they were well packaged and fitted through my letter box which makes a change
I was amazed how spongy the grip felt (thats good) it was easy to apply to my bat using a grip cone unlike some grips which tear if streched too much.
The grip has been on my bat for 10 matches so far and is showing no sign of wear. There is minimal discolouration to my batting gloves which shows what a quality grip this is, as grips normally leave a dirty mark on gloves.
The grip is also very 'grippy' which I suppose is what matters when you buy a grip! With previous grips my bat slipped out of my hands but with the upfront grip there is minimal movement.
The grips come in many different colours such as Pink,Red,Blue,Yellow and many more.
So in summary these grips are great quality and not too badly priced; remember you get what you pay for. You may see some nice cheap 99p grips but it's worth spending the extra to get these.
Pink rubber grip for better handling of the cricket bat.