Full articles on cricket protective equipment can be found across this site but which are the best products? It’s important to put them to the test and here are my best selections.
1. DSC Cricket Abdominal Guard
It seems odd to say an abdominal guard is attractive but this is a stunning design that makes DSC’s model stand out. They are also a well-known manufacturer with cricket bats used by pros across the world so this equipment was definitely worth checking out.
The bright blue face makes it more recognisable on the shop shelves but, more importantly, what type of protection does it provide? It’s a standard design and comes in a range of sizes from junior upwards so it should be easy to find one that fits perfectly.
It’s padded around the edge so it is extremely comfortable while the face is made from high impact polymer material to help withstand the fastest of bowling. It has a buckle system for fastening and fits easily into a jockstrap.
I tried this in the nets and, while I didn’t ask for balls to be thrown at my groin region specifically, I did feel confident that the DSC Cricket Abdominal Guard would do its job when called into action.
2. SG Optipro Cricket Helmet
A batting helmet wasn’t essential in the early part of my club playing career but, with faster bowlers and bouncier wickets. I’ve been wearing one for a few years now and one problem I’ve always had has been an issue with overheating.
In the past, helmets have just been too hot and sweaty but I’ve really been impressed with the performance of the SG Optipro. It’s lightweight and it has a strong sweat absorbent lining so I haven’t been too hot this summer.
It’s another piece of equipment that comes in a range of sizes while the grille at the front is adjustable. Thankfully I’ve yet to be struck on the head while playing but I do feel confident in the protection that it gives. For strength and comfort, I’m really happy.
3. Whitedot 1.0 Dot Cricket Batting Gloves
Gloves are another item of equipment that can make you too hot. The search for a pair that are lightweight yet strong is tough but I’d like to save you a long search by recommending this product from Whitedot.
One thing I particularly liked was the fact that there was a lot of ventilation on the palms. You can have too many tiny holes in the material but this is just right.
The protection is there in all the right areas too with strong padding around the knuckles and thumbs. Another problem I’ve encountered with gloves over the years is a tendency to wear through on the parts that grip the bat handle. With this Whitedot range, there is an extra leather patch on the vulnerable area so this shouldn’t happen.
A range of sizes is here from juniors upwards and this is another good all round product which is protective and comfortable to wear. I should also mention that both right and left handed gloves are available.
4. Adidas XT 2.0 Dual Cricket Thigh Guard
Not every batsman chooses to wear a thigh guard but I’ve found that I can be vulnerable in this area and I can confirm that it really hurts if you get struck here. Like all safety equipment, we’re looking for a good mix of strength and comfort.
One thing I really like about this product is that it has an inner thigh guard for extra protection. This is why the Adidas XT 2.0 is referred to as a ‘dual thigh guard’. The inner piece is detachable, however, so you can remove this if you’d prefer just to have the strap going around the inner thigh.
I was initially attracted to this because the reviews made a big thing about the lightness of the product. The Adidas XT 2.0 is made from a double knit, dot knit fabric and I can say that it is very comfortable. That’s one big issue that I’ve had with thigh guards over the years – I really need to wear one but it’s been so hard to find one that doesn’t scratch or wear on the skin.
It’s been one of my best finds and, once again, there’s a range of sizes for everyone.
5. SG Campus Batting Leg Guards
Like a lot of the products on this list, the SG Campus Batting Leg Guards have solved a big problem for me. I’ve often found that these guards, or pads, come loose in play and the straps start to detach.
That’s a problem that restricts running between the wickets but that hasn’t happened with the SG Campus product. They’ve remained firmly in place for a whole season and I’m confident that they will last for a few more years.
There is a PVC face with reinforcement so they are strong as well as long lasting.