Comparing Cricket Bowling Machines: Why You Need One And Which Is The Best For You?

by Mike Jones

Bowling machines allow cricket batsmen to practice and hone their skills. There machines offer a distinct advantage during training sessions. A batsman will be able to repetitively focus on a certain shot until they've developed a certain skill level. Also, a player can practice when no one is on hand to bowl. While these are relatively simple machines, they can be useful for skill development. However, within the athletic community, there are a few who question the value of training with a bowling machine.

The questions primarily arise around the types of pitches that can be made. While both mechanical and pneumatic bowling machines can deliver a variety of pitches, sometimes adjustments have to made to achieve different types of results. An additional argument is that there is inherent value in learning to 'read' bowlers. By watching their facial expressions, stance and other subtle indicators, a batsman can learn to predict the types of pitches that they will receive.

Best Cricket Bowling Machines for the Money

Best Cricket Bowling Machines for the Money
Best Cricket Bowling Machines for the Money

Below are five notable cricket bowling machines with reviews so that the buyer can make an informed decision about which is best for their training environment and desired experience.

As professional cricket teams and clubs have increasingly included practice with bowling machine into their training schedules, the value and skill development that results from working with a bowling machine has increasingly been accepted. Today, most professional cricket players recommend training in both environments: practice games with live bowlers and training sessions with a bowling machine. This allows batsman to develop a broader range of skills including the intuitive live play situations, as well as, reacting to specific pitches.

Among cricket bowling machines today, there are the mechanical and pneumatic bowling machines. These are simple pieces of equipment that can deliver bowls including: fast, swing, spin, seam and bouncers. Programmable machines have been introduced to strengthen the athletes experience.

While mechanical and pneumatic machines can deliver a range of shots, they must be reset to change the type of bowl. Programmable machines, owning to an onboard computer control, can be set up to continuous deliver a variety of pitches. This means that while the coach can set it for a player to practice a certain pitch, they can also set it to deliver random bowls so that they athlete never knows what is coming. Again, this can be a valuable addition to a training schedule, particularly when it is combined with the unique challenges of live play.

Heater Sports Deuce 2 Wheel Cricket Bowling Machine - Link

The Heater Sports Deuce 2 Wheel Cricket Bowling Machine is designed to take your skills to a whole new level. The pivot head design allows athletes to hone their skills with out-swings, in-swings, fastballs and spin balls. The automatic ball feeder has a 12-practice ball capacity so that more time is focused on actual skill development. The bowling machine can be powered by a standard wall outlet or a third-party battery pack.

Heater Sports Deuce 2 Wheel Cricket Bowling Machine
Heater Sports Deuce 2 Wheel Cricket Bowling Machine

Dual speed controls allow the swing variation of each wheel to be independently set for speeds up to 121 kpm. This allows for greater control of specific training goals. Wheels are completely enclosed for safety. Sturdy steel legs increase the stability of the unit during operation.

Pros:

  • Pivot head design for a variety of pitches including out-swings, in-swings and spin balls.
  • Automatic ball feeder with a 12 light ball capacity.
  • Can be powered by a wall outlet or a battery pack.
  • Wheel speed can be independently adjusted up to 121 kph.
  • Wheels enclosed for safety during operation.
  • Steels legs provide stability while in use.
  • Bowling machine can also be used for tennis practice.

Cons:

  • Battery power is an additional purchase.
  • Balls are sold separately.

Slider Cricket Bowling Machine by Heater Sports - Link

For athletes looking for master inside breaking balls, fastballs or outside breaking balls, the Slider Bowling Machine from Heater Sports fills the bill. The unit has a 12 lite-ball automatic feeder capacity. Ball speed can be adjusted up to 60 mph. During use, the Slider will pitch balls every 9 seconds.
Heater Sports Slider Cricket Bowling Machine By Heater Sports
Heater Sports Slider Cricket Bowling Machine By Heater Sports

This machine allows players to work independently on specific pitches even if there isn't anyone else around to bowl. The swivel adjustment makes it easy to practice fastballs, as well as, curve balls. This bowling machine is powered by a standard wall outlet or a battery pack. The wheel mechanism is fully enclosed for safety while being used.

Pros:

  • Easy to adjust for practice on a variety of pitches including fastballs, in-swing and out-swing.
  • Automatic ball feeder has a 12-ball capacity.
  • During use, balls are pitched every 9 seconds.
  • Ball speed can be adjusted up to 60 mph.
  • Wheel mechanism is encased for safety.
  • Uses a standard wall outlet or optional battery pack.
  • Sturdy steel construction gives the unit stability.

Cons:

  • Unit does not work with real cricket balls or tennis balls.
  • Battery power is purchased separately.
  • Practice balls are purchased separately.
  • Ball speed adjustment is lower than some bowling machines on the market.

Paceman Strike Bowling Machine - Swing For Six With This Bowling Machine

This is an all-around bowling machine designed to help athletes develop their skills no matter what level they are batting at. From the new player just learning the intricacies of the sport to the veteran player, this machine can help push their skills higher than ever before. Because of its adaptability to a variety of skill levels, this unit is popular with both schools and clubs.

Paceman Strike Bowling Machine - Swing For Six With This Bowling Machine [Net World Sports]
Paceman Strike Bowling Machine - Swing For Six With This Bowling Machine [Net World Sports]

Adjustable lengths and delivery settings for in-swing and out-swing allows athletes to simulated 'real world' game play and be ready for anything. Speeds can easily be adjusted up to 100 kph allowing the coach or trainer to tailor the practice session to the individual's needs. As the unit is light weight and easily transported, its useful at home, school or the local cricket club. The unit is equipped with an automatic ball feeder with a 12-ball capacity. One practice ball is included.

Pros:

  • Suited for training both new and veteran players.
  • Easily stored and transported.
  • Popular with individuals, schools and local cricket clubs.
  • Highly adjustable lengths and delivery settings
  • Easily simulates game play.
  • Ball speeds up to 100 kpm.
  • 12 ball automatic feeder capacity.
  • Easy to store and transport.
  • Mechanisms are enclosed for safety during operation.

Cons:

  • Only 1 ball included. Balls must be purchased separately.
  • Battery packs sold separately.

Net World Sports Paceman Bowling Machine [Pro X2] World Class Batting Training - Link

When a cricketer wants to play like the pros, they get the equipment the pros use. This bowling machines uses multi-function batting to deliver a high-quality training experience. The multi-spin settings, adjustable speeds and length settings allow for challenging, yet realistic, training sessions. Both new batters and seasoned pros have used this bowling machine to develop their skills to their peak. The ability to mimic 'real world' game scenarios during training helps athletes be better prepared in a real match.

Net World Sports Paceman Bowling Machine [Pro X2] | World Class Batting Training | Adjust Your Lengths
Net World Sports Paceman Bowling Machine [Pro X2] | World Class Batting Training | Adjust Your Lengths

The unit is powered by a DC motor. The high-quality construction was designed for safe use and easy transportation. Ball speeds can be adjusted up to 110 kph giving each athlete a pro-level training experience.

Pros:

  • Delivers an all-around training experience.
  • Easily stored and transported for use at schools, home garden or local cricket club.
  • Multi-spin settings for a variety of pitches.
  • Speed adjustable up to 110 kph.
  • Length is adjustable.
  • Solid steel legs for stability during use.
  • Mechanisms are contained for safety during use.

Cons:

  • Includes one practice light ball. Additional balls and automatic ball feeder are purchased separately.
  • Battery power packs are sold separately.

Paceman Original S2 Cricket Bowling Machine - Link

The Original S2 Cricket Bowling Machine from Paceman is an all-around, high quality piece of training equipment. For the optimal training experience, the pitch lengths are adjustable with duel-delivery swing functions. The unit features the integrated Paceman Drive System for smooth, seamless practice sessions. The unit's automatic feeder has a 12-ball storage capacity and is sold with one ball. An optional pack of 12 light Paceman balls is available.

Net World Sports Paceman Original S2 Cricket Bowling Machine - The Best Way To Master The Art Of Batting [Net World Sports]
Net World Sports Paceman Original S2 Cricket Bowling Machine - The Best Way To Master The Art Of Batting [Net World Sports]

The variable speed adjustment allows batsmen to practice at realistic speeds. Ball speeds can be increased up to 90 kph so that each practice session can be made as challenging as desired. The ball machine is so light and easily packed that it is ideal for use both at home or at the club. This means that athletes can use it in junction with their team practice periods then extend their training into specific areas in their own garden or backyard.

Pros:

  • Easy to transport for use at home or away.
  • Easily stored when not in use.
  • 12 ball storage capacity
  • Variable speed adjustment, up to 90 kph, to tailor training session.
  • Adjustable pitch lengths with duel delivery swing functions.

Cons:

  • Additional balls must be sold separately.
  • Needs to be connected to a power outlet.
  • Not able to produce a pitch with a spin, only in-swing and out-swing for fast bowling.

FIREFLY Academy Ball Feeder Cricket Feed machine - Link

FIRE FLY Academy Ball Feeder Cricket Feed Machine with Balls Bowling Machine with Balls Automatic Bowling Machine Pitching Machine Professional Cricket Ball Machine Adult Kids Youth Men
FIRE FLY Academy Ball Feeder Cricket Feed Machine with Balls Bowling Machine with Balls Automatic Bowling Machine Pitching Machine Professional Cricket Ball Machine Adult Kids Youth Men

The FIREFLY Academy Ball Feeder cricket feed machine is one of the best cricket bowling machines you can get right now. It provides an excellent optimal training medium for professionals and casual cricket lovers.

This machine has incredibly fast delivery rates and is one of its best selling points. It is also affordable and of sturdy quality build. The machine is available for use in academy cricket practices, schools, clubs, and even casual outdoor games with other cricket enthusiasts.

Another thing worth noting about this ball pitching machine is that it can hold a large number of balls at the same time. This ensures consistency in your practice since you don't have to break strides while practicing to constantly refill the machine.

The FIREFLY Academy Ball Feeder cricket feed machine isn't only great for batting practice. With the right angle, you can also practice your ball catching skills using this machine.

The machine comes out of the box with apower adapter and 8x practice balls. With this, you can get started immediately you plug the machine in!

Pros

  • Practice your swings, batting, and catching skills using this machine
  • Easy to use; No assemble needed
  • Suitable for schools, clubs, and outdoor recreational centers.

Cons

  • It weighs about 100 kg.
  • There aren't many options with which you can select how fast or frequent you want the balls to be delivered.
  • Not suitable for indoor use.

Best Cricket Bowling Machine Buying Guide

Cricket is one of the most popular sports in the world. It involves a lot of physical activities, skills, and deadly precision to win while playing the game. Due to the many activities involved, practicing the game can be difficult for many reasons.

For one, there is the big danger of getting injured while practicing as a result of the strenuous activities involved in the game. There is also the chance that somebody is unavailable to play which then leads to incomplete teams and whatnot.

Fortunately, we have cricket bowling machines for help.Essentially, these machines make it possible to practice all the important aspects of cricket, especially one's batting skills.

When these machines were just invented, there were only a few of them. However, that has completely changed over the years with thousands of them available to buy on the market. They all come with unique features and functions that set them apart.

In this section, we will discuss important factors that you should consider before buying a Cricket bowling machine.

Control Options

This is perhaps the first thing you want to check out in a cricket bowling machine. Different control options are very essential in a cricket bowling machine. These options influences how fast or slow the machine pitches balls.

The control options available also determine how easy it would be to operate the machine.

Now, knowing the type of control options on a machine can be difficult without buying it. One easy way to find out how easy it is to operate the machine is to check online customer feedbacks on the machine. This would give you a fairly solid idea of how the machine works compared to others on the market.

Price

You don't just buy any bowling machine because the price falls within the set budget you have. This isn't necessarily a bad thing since there is a chance you might get excellent value for your money. However, there is also the possibility that you could slightly be overpaying for the machine.

As earlier stated, there are different bowling machines on the market. The two main factors that separate them is the different brand or manufacturer that produces them and the unique features that they come with. Another factor that quickly sets a machine apart from its competitors is its price.

More often than not, manufacturers try to put up prices that can convince you to buy their product in place of their competitors.

Before buying a cricket bowling machine, we advise comparing all the prices of the best cricket bowling machines that caught your eyes. This can give you a good idea of the ideal standard price of the machines and how much falls into the "overpaying" category.

Power Option

There are only two types of ways to power a cricket bowling machine. Some machines are battery powered and others that run on electricity.

The type of bowling machine you choose should depend on the available facilities you have. For instance, battery-powered bowling machines are ideal for outdoor practice and also quite portable. This is because you do not need electricity or a power socket to make it work. All you have to do is fit in the batteries and you are good to go.

Machines that require being plugged intend to be more powerful on the other hand and for good reason. They are also ideal for both outdoor and indoor use. Using them is not as dynamic as using a battery-powered one because you have to always be on the lookout for a power socket before you can think of using it.

NOTE: There is no better alternative between the two. The type of machine you decide to buy is down to personal preference - i.e. whether you want a battery-operated machine or not.

Delivery Speed

Deliveries are one of the most important aspects of cricket bowling machines. One can even say it is their main function.

Most of the best cricket bowling machines on the market have impressive delivery speeds. However, not all of them come with options to tweak or adjust. Being able to adjust the delivery speed of a bowling machine can be quite useful especially as a beginner or if the machine is being used in a confined space. This can help avoid the possibility of getting injured while practicing.

Other Features

There are other features in a cricket bowling machine that can be the difference between great and bad when describing your experience using one.

One popular one you want to consider is the ball retention capacity of the machine. Machines with large ball capacity are very useful since it promises longer sessions before you have to refill.

Another good feature premium bowling machines come with is the Auto Ball feeder hose. What this does is it automatically picks up discarded balls and loads them back into the machine. It is a very premium feature.

The size and design of a bowling machine are also important to consider. This is very important when considering how to store the machine when it is not in use. Most bowling machines have sturdy legs that provide stability. Some however come with wheels for improved mobility.

Conclusively, by completely evaluating these are more, you are guaranteed a better chance of buying a machine that would ultimately serve all your needs.

FAQs for Cricket Bowling Machines Buyers

What is a Cricket Bowling Machine?

Heater Sports Base Hit Lite & Real Baseball Pitching Machine | Great for All Ages for Hitting and Fielding
Heater Sports Base Hit Lite & Real Baseball Pitching Machine | Great for All Ages for Hitting and Fielding

Considering Cricket Bowling machines are only popular in the United States, it is completely understandable if you have no idea what the machine is.

All you need to know is a Cricket bowling machine is handy equipment that helps in practicing batting and catching for hours without the need of an actual bowler. The machine is mostly used by schools and cricket clubs.

Does Cricket Bowling Machines Improve Batting Skills?

Franklin Sports MLB Electronic Baseball Pitching Machine - Includes Six Plastic Baseballs, Silver/Blue (6696S3)
Franklin Sports MLB Electronic Baseball Pitching Machine - Includes Six Plastic Baseballs, Silver/Blue (6696S3)

To put it simply, Bowling machines are an excellent tool to have when used in the right way. This is because while you can improve your batting skills and swing power with these machines, you can also quickly develop bad cricketing habits.

Experts recommend practicing 50 percent using a cricket bowling machine and 50 percent against human bowlers. That way, you get the most out of the machine while also developing the best skills for you.

How to get good delivery and ball bounce from a bowling machine?

The type of ball bounce you get from a bowling machine depends on the type of ball being used. White cricket balls are a little heavy which greatly limits their delivery speed compared to green balls. Green balls on the other hand don't often produce great bounce as the white balls do.

NOTE: You might also have to adjust the height and delivery angle of your bowling machine to get the right bounce you want.

What Type of Surface can I Place a Bowling Machine on?

Bowling machines come with different features and designs. The type of design a machine comes with determines what type of surface is best to place it on.

Most bowling machines have sturdy legs so you can place them on grass, concrete, and any type of floor. However, there are also bowling machines with wheels. These work best on concrete and hard floors.


Are Battery-Powered Cricket Machines any good?

Yes, but they are not as powerful or popular as plug-in bowling machines.

That said, battery-powered cricket machines do offer a couple of advantages over plug-in versions. The most notable benefit is that they are incredibly portable so you can use them anywhere and at any time provided you have the batteries to power them.

Conclusion on Cricket Bowling Machines

SKLZ Catapult Soft Toss Baseball and Softball Batting and Fielding Trainer
SKLZ Catapult Soft Toss Baseball and Softball Batting and Fielding Trainer

There are a wide variety of cricket bowling machines in the marketplace. While they are relatively simple mechanical pieces of training equipment, they are not all created equal. When looking for a suitable personal or team machine, coaches and athletes need to consider the skill level of the individuals who will be using the equipment. Simple questions regarding the needed functionality of the bowling machine also need to be addressed. Will it need to be transported frequently to different training locations? What speed and pitch length adjustments are required for training sessions? What types of pitches does the machine need to perform (fastball, inswing/outswing, spin)? What types of powers sources are available? The answers to these sorts of questions will help guide coaches and cricketers to make the best choices for their training equipment.

While the benefits of training and playing with a team are plentiful, setting aside time to work individually on specific skills can be invaluable. Cricket bowling machine can help athletes develop their skills quickly and efficiently. By practicing the same shot repetitively, the player will start to develop a muscle memory. On game day, they will often react unconsciously due to the conditioning they went through during training.

When cricketers train, they need to train the whole athlete. This includes work with their team members, as well as, individual skill development. From what they do on the field to their private sessions with a good cricket bowling machine, it all works to build better, stronger cricketers.

About Mike Jones

As a child of the 80's, my fondest gaming memories are playing Pitfall, Frogger, Kaboom! and Chopper Command on our old Atari 8600. These days I've been rocking the Nintendo Classic and learning some new card and board games with the family."

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