There has been a lot said of the purchase of cricket bats on ebay. So as a seller of a large number of cricket bats on ebay for several seasons, I feel I can add some advice on the positives and negatives of buying a bat here online.
Firstly let me say that as a cricketer of 30 years, I have used a number of different models of most of the brand name cricket bats available and for those who take the time to look, I sell many different brands and models, but they all have one thing in common, they are all Indian made. Infact the large majority of all cricket equipment worldwide, regardless of the brand, is made in India.
Most brands and models are available on ebay, but from my experiences, unless you buy them from an Australian seller, be very wary. I have many emails from buyers over the years saying they bought a genuine Kookaburra from Pakistan, but it is only an average bat with fake stickers!!
So, you want to buy a cricket bat on ebay. Firstly know your budget. Once you have an idea of what you want to spend then look at what brand you prefer. Once you have the brand then the model. You need to take into account a number of things, size, is it a full size mens bat? What weight is the bat? Is it light, medium or heavy? What type of willow is it? Kashmir or English willow? Does it come with a cover? Is it knocked and oiled and ready to play?
Most importantly, do they have a returns policy?
Once these questions have been answered, then you need to find out postage costs, where is the bat located? There are sellers who claim to be in Australia, but either are not, or the item is not. Ask the seller if you can call them and come and inspect the bat or pick the bat up, this will then answer the question on location. Aslo check their shipping and delivery times.
A word of warning, ALL cricket bats coming into Australia are subject to customs and quarantine inspection. All cricket bats coming into Australia are inspected, no exceptions. A seller that says there are no extra fees when they send from overseas are not being honest, while most get through ok, there has been a number of buyers who have had to pay a considerable amount of money on top of their purchase price to get their bats cleared.
UPDATE 9-10-2007 PLEASE NOTE CUSTOMS AND QUARANTINE HAVE CRACKED DOWN ON ALL BATS COMING INTO AUSTRALIA CHECK OVERSEAS SELLERS FEEDBACK TO SEE PROOF.
Kashmir versus English willow, same tree grown in a different country, fact. The majority of Indian cricketers, use kashmir willow, apart from test cricketers. Dont be deceived by people who claim english willow is the only wood for a cricket bat, this is simply not true. There has been many debates over this issue. I have used Kasmir willow for 3 years now and in my opinion, kashmir willow provides a very good value for money alternative and performs exceptionally well. Kashmir willow is cheaper as it is more readily available, the bats still have good ping, big sweet spots and in a lot of cases they last longer.
I hope this has answered some questions for you. Happy bidding!