As a cricketer there is no better feeling then middling a cricket ball and watching the ball race away to the fence from your cricket bat. You may have the best cricket gloves and pads but, nothing gives you more confidence then knowing you have a bat in your hand that will let you hit boundaries effortlessly.
There are well over 200 cricket bats available on the market right now with each individual range being divided into their own grading of the English willow. So, we decided to test and compare the most popular cricket bats on the market right now to help you not only find the bat with the best responsiveness but also good value for money. Let’s dive straight in see what we have!
Best Cricket Bats 2022
1. Ton Special Edition Cricket Bat
Ton is a series of cricket bats created by Saren Sports (SS) back in India. The company started in 1969 and began exporting its cricket bats to the UK in 1979. Their bats have been associated with very high-profile Indian players such as Virender Sehwag and V.V.S Laxman as well Jonny Bairstow more recently for England. So, the Ton bats are known for their amazing specs so let’s dive in and see if the Ton Special is the same.
Straight away out of the bat sleeve, the grade 1 cricket bat looks stunning. Love the engravings and the simplicity of how it looks. Made all of sapwood, you get 8 or 9 blemish free grains with the bat. This is a laser engraved bat which is typically used for the most premium options so, considering the price of this, it’s a rare opportunity to grab one for an affordable price.
As we mentioned earlier, the Tons are known for their big bats and this one has a 39mm edge, 63mm spine and a 22mm toe. These are huge specs and minimal concaving gives the bat a wide middle to hit from.
It does have quite a thick toe so if you like a featherlight pickup then this might not be suitable for you as it can feel a little bottom heavy. A quick tip might be to add a second grip or even a third to counterbalance the weight.
Having hit a few balls with it, the bat felt quite soft and very responsive. We tested high up the bat as well as low and both performed well. It’s one that will reach peak performance as soon it’s been knocked in.
Overall, this bat is fantastic value for money and looks stunning! We were very impressed with how responsive it was and felt like it could be ready as soon as it’s knocked in! Highly recommended.
2. DSC Split 4000
Our number two pick is from Indian manufacturer DSC which prides itself on providing batters unsurpassed control and power. In terms of value for money and budget cricket bats, this is very deserving of our number one spot. The Split is famous for being used by David Miller and this is the affordable option from the bats on offer.
Looking at the bat, we were surprised by how clean and fairly straight the grains were for a budget bat. The stickers come in a flashy lime green colour which stands out and look cool.
In terms of pickup, the bat did feel a little bottom heavy so felt its weight. It potentially won’t be as light as some may like but still felt lighter than its dead weight.
What really impressed us the most with this bat is the responsiveness or more specifically the ping off the middle, the ball absolutely flies off the middle.
Overall, in terms of value for money and the performance that you get from this bat, it could quite easily be placed as the number one pick. It absolutely flies off the middle which is a surprise when you consider how cheap the bat is.
3. Newbery Blitz SPS
If you have read some of our other cricket reviews, then you will know how much we love Newbery products, and this cricket bat is no different! For us, the company represents elite craftsmanship ship and innovation combined with strong traditions. Just a simple browse on their website demonstrates this which is also displayed in their equipment. There is a wide range of choices available, and we have gone for the T20 specialist option which is the Blitz.
Even off the stickers, you can see the precision and attention to detail that has gone into this. The chrome like stickers combined with the green highlight’s elegance combined with innovation which matches its purpose for the T20 format.
As we also expect from a T20 bat, this is an enormous bat with big specs. Not only is the blade slightly shorter with a longer handle which we expect from T20 bats, but there is so much wood behind the middle. This combined with the light pickup makes it a real weapon in the middle.
What we loved about this bat the most is the responsiveness when we tested it with a ball. The ball was absolutely flying off the middle which is a mid-middle perfect for an all-round player.
Overall, we have always been a huge fan of Newbery as you might have seen in our other articles and the Blitz bat is no different. The ping off this bat is incredible and middling a bat will send it flying to the fence. Definitely some of the best craftsmanship on the market right now!
4. Gray-Nicolls Vapour Gen Players
No introductions needed here for Gray-Nicolls as we are sure you have heard about this company before. One of the oldest cricket companies having been founded in 1855, Gray-Nicolls has been at the forefront for many years now with major ambassadors such as Alastair Cook, and Andrew Strauss having been life-long users.
Although not a very grainy bat with only seven grains, it’s a good-looking bat that is pretty much blemish-free. There’s a small amount of heartwood on the right-hand side edge of the bat.
The stickers on the front are representative of the classic Gray-Nicolls bats and we love the blue that comes with this which gives it a cool look. However, when you turn the bat around, it does have the classic busy looking back of the bat which may not be for everyone’s taste. For us, we prefer the simpler look showing off the wood, but the colour of the blue does look cool giving it a futuristic look to it.
In terms of the profile, this bat has a lower middle which is great for front foot players with a lot of wood behind that sweet spot. Comes with a big 39mm edge, 63mm spine and a 22mm toe which is great when you consider this to be a low-density bat. With the big toe and lower middle, you do feel this spec in the pickup of the bat as it might be minimally bottom heavy but only slightly. You can add a second grip to potentially offset this but it’s not compulsory.
Finally, the Gray-Nicolls bats tend to have a medium to harder feel to the bats but testing these they were a lot softer than we expected. So, the bat shouldn’t take too long to be ready for the middle but some good knocking in is still recommended (roughly an hour or two).
5. New Balance Burn
When we usually think of New Balance, you would not be mistaken for thinking about shoes. You may even have seen the company mentioned in our best cricket shoes review. So, some of you maybe surprised to hear that New Balance produce cricket equipment and in fact may even have seen Joe Root and Steve Smith rock some New Balance cricket attire. If two of the best batters in the world right now are using New Balance then it is definitely worth mentioning in our article.
Straight off the bat, you’ll notice the blue reflective stickers on the front and back of the bat which look very nice. We love how New Balance have kept the back of the bat relatively plain to show off the wood which gives it a simple but clean look.
So, the Burn is slightly different compared to the other ranges in New Balance bats in that they have tried to make the Burn as light as possible by making the blade shorter. You can feel this in the pickup as it feels very light in the hands.
Even though, they have the shorter blade, you still get lots of wood with the bat along with nice big edges. With a relatively larger sweet spot in the middle of the bat, the ping was very impressive as well.
Overall, another value for money option that would be a great for someone looking for a light option. These have been particularly popular with young batsmen who are moving on from harrow bats to adult bats. The light pickup combined with the larger sweet spot makes this a fantastic option.
6. Stallionz Spark Pro Cricket Bat
One of the less well-known handmade bat makers based in UK, Stallionz is famous for producing affordable bats. Their website mentions that they have over 100 bats under £175 which is an impressive collection. The Spark is one of many ranges available and we tested the Pro which is the top grade available in the range.
The bat comes with 8 solid grains and is made of sapwood. We love the way it looks with the red and black stickers, looks a fantastic extension of the handle in the black. The stickers on all the ranges look very nice and its an area you can see Stallionz has put effort in to make it look nice. The use of chrome and black with the maroon is a great combination on this bat.
Stallionz bats are known for having quite full profiles with their bats and the Spark is no different. The convex shape means there’s plenty of wood behind the centre of the bat with a nice wide middle which gives you that margin of error.
The bat has very big specs with a 40mm edge, 20mm toe and a 60mm spine which when you consider the weight of the bat is fantastic. As expected with the bigger profile, this does affect the pickup as it’s not as light as some of the other bats but still doesn’t feel too heavy. The thick handle slightly offsets the big thick toe of the bat for a nicer pickup.
The bat comes with a fantastic ping as well, all the way from the toe of the bat up to the stickers. We think that the bat shouldn’t take too long to be knocked in and should reach peak performance relatively quickly.
Overall, fantastic handmade bat that packs a punch without the premium cost. You can tell Stallionz have really spent time on making the bat look nice as well as making sure the performance is there as well.
7. Kookaburra Beast
Kookaburra doesn’t need any introduction, one of the more famous brands in the cricket market with some of the worlds best players having used this over the years. They are well known for having very graphic detailed designs and it’s no different with this Beast.
We must admit this is one very cool looking cricket bat with lots of detail on the stickers to top off the red colours. One thing you do have to consider is the grip of the bat which comes with a see-through silicon mesh type material which is unique to the company. These can be a little hit and miss but we liked the feel of them.
One surprising factor when it comes to the big beast is the pickup, which was relatively light and well balanced. We do find that the shape of the bats is relatively similar across the Kookaburra’s designed for an all-round stroke player with a mid-middle spec. It does come with quite a thin toe, roughly about 13mm which might not be for everyone’s liking.
Overall, an aggressive bat that really stands out when it’s in your hand. We would say that it requires a bold personality to go with the graphic stickers that you get with a Beast.
8. DSC Krunch 2000
Another mention for DSC in our top cricket bats and this one is affiliated with David Warner. As you might know, David Warner is considered a very dynamic player with shots all around the ground. This is reflected in the Krunch series with incredible performance specs which will help anyone out in the middle.
Straight off the bat, looking at the grains of the bat, they are so clean and straight. Combined with the orange stickers you might have seen Warner dominate with in the Ashes, this bat is definitely an eye-catcher.
Now the reason why DSC bats have been very popular so far is because of their profile. They are currently well known for having big edges with this one being 43mm combined with a 66m spine and 29mm toe. We do recommend adding an additional grip as it does pick up its weight because of the big profile. The additional grip will enhance the pickup and just make it that little more balanced when swinging the bat.
Finally, probably our most favourite thing about the bat is the responsiveness or how well it pings off the wood. A few tests with a fresh cricket ball and you could see the cricket ball flying off the middle.
Overall, the Krunch is a powerful bat that is designed for a powerful and dynamic batsmen like Warner.
9. Gunn and Moore Chroma
Another classic brand when it comes to cricket equipment in England in the form of Gunn and Moore with over 130 years of experience. Endorsed by Ben Stokes, it’s often known that when you pick up a GM cricket bat, you will instantly feel the finest craftsmanship and design in your hands.
The first thing you’ll notice straight away about the looks is the simplicity and elegance that comes with this bat. The silvery and metallic chrome stickers on the bat look sharp all around.
Having looked down the back of the bat, we noticed the full profile and just how much wood there was around the middle of the bat. So, for us batsmen who strike the bat off-centre more than we’d like, this is very forgiving in that there’s still quite a chunk of wood behind it. This was also reflected with the mallet as it remained very responsive.
In terms of pickup, it’s not the lightest option as expected because of the fuller profile. However, it still feels it’s weight, so it picked up much better than we first thought.
Overall, a fantastic all-round bat that we will help anyone’s game. The fuller profile means more forgiveness on your shots which most of us club cricketers could use especially the extra wood around the edges!
10. New Balance DC 580
Another mention for New Balance in our list and this one is Steve Smith’s choice of bat! It’s no surprise that the DC refers to dynamic cricketer and is associated with one of the funkiest techniques. We’ve gone for one of the lower models due to its incredible value for money and as an option for crickets looking at cheap cricket bats.
We love the colour scheme of these bats, the blue and orange really stand out together and look cool when in your hands. This is combined with impressive grains with limited number of blemishes on the bat. This is quite surprising considering how cheap the bat is.
The key attribute for the DC range of bats is the lower middle which is perfect for our front foot batsmen who will get significant performance out of those areas of the bat in the lower middle. With this, it’s no surprise that you do feel the weight lower down so does pickup its weight.
Overall, this is truly a dynamic bat that will be perfect for a front-foot dominant player. Although, we usually say not to buy a bat based purely on the stickers, we must admit that we do love the colours on this one. Plus considering the price of this model, it’s unbelievable value for money.
We hope you enjoyed our article and that it has helped narrow down some options for you. We’ve tried to include some of the top of the range options along with budget friendly ones. Don’t forget to check out our heated body warmers if you are doing any training in the Winter or need an extra light layer to keep you warm.