Brown reveals big-hitting ‘secret’ ahead of BBL|13 Final

A bat-maker by trade, Brisbane Heat's hard-hitting opener has revealed what helps him clear the rope regularly

'Very good cricket swing': Sixers back experience to stop Brown

There's not too many cricketers who can craft their own bat exactly to their liking, but Josh Brown is one with such luxury – and he's using it to his advantage.

A bat-maker with Cooper Cricket by trade, the Brisbane Heat opener has been a Big Bash revelation since bursting onto the scene last summer with a hard-hitting 19-ball half-century against the Sydney Sixers, the Heat’s opponent in tonight's KFC BBL|13 Final.

But having used Michael Neser's bat earlier in the season to "see what the competitors are like" as he fought his way through a lean patch with opposition bowlers figuring him out, the 30-year-old switched back to his trusty Cooper Bison with devastating effect in Monday night's Challenger.

With his own unique "mid-edge" profiled bat in hand, Brown crashed the Adelaide Strikers attack a record 12 sixes in a single innings on his way to the competition's third highest score of all-time, finishing with 140 from 57 balls to lift the Brisbane Heat into their second straight season decider.

"I use a mid-edge and then I have a spine that runs from high to low, so I've got all the meat from high to low rather than just a traditional mid-middle," Brown told post-match at Carrara Stadium after his maiden century.

"I try and keep it as big as I can through there and then I duckbill the toe away just to shift the weight back up my hands a little bit more, and then it picks up a lot lighter.

"Mid-edge gives you more forgiveness with having the spine running the whole way down the bat."

While there's three regular cricket bat shapes – high-, mid- and low-middle – the mid-edge profile is popular with power-hitters to ensure the willow spreads out along the bat as much as possible to allow good value for shots off other areas, with the duckbill profile adding thickness to the toe for a better-balanced bat.

Brown slams BBL's second fastest ton

Although he fixes his teammates bats during the season, a return to making them awaits after tonight's decider unless an opportunity arises on the global T20 circuit.

However that might come sooner than expected, with AAP reporting on Wednesday that Brown has fielded offers from UAE and Bangladesh franchises, and could even fly out to play in those leagues later this week.

Whatever arises, the opener said he was ready to grab the opportunity with "both hands".

Picked up out of Queensland's T20 Max competition as a local replacement player for BBL|12 after launching 10 sixes in a 68-ball 147 for his club side Northern Suburbs last summer, which he followed with 17 sixes in a 59-ball 159 a week later, Brown says power-hitting comes naturally to him and it's his golf swing that actually needs more work.

"I'd say golf would be my coach, there's the same sort of fundamentals of it," he said.

"You've got to have a stable base, got to be still to hit the ball nicely so that's probably my big secret.

"I've actually got golf lessons and not cricket lessons, so that says a lot."

By his own admission, his spectacular century was a "contrasting innings" from his previous knock where he swung and missed at 12 deliveries in his 15 off 22 before edging an attempted hook shot behind off Ben Dwarshuis.

"I played and missed everything, I just swung a bit too hard," Brown said.

"I just slowed my swing speed down a little bit (against the Strikers) and just tried to hit every ball where it was meant to go.

"(Nathan) McSweeney helped a lot as well, we've played a lot of club cricket together so he's seen me at my best and my worst, and he knew what to say to me to keep me in the right mindset.

"Just committing, that's all I think about when the bowler is running in, is to just watch and react."

Brown at the Cooper Cricket store in Brisbane // supplied-Brisbane Heat

Sixers skipper Moises Henriques "wasn't surprised" at Brown's feats in the Challenger but believes his side's experience can help them come out on top.

"He got 70 off 30 against us at the Gabba last year in a T20 game and in a one-day game, NSW-Queensland, he got a very quickfire 40 as well, so we've seen what he can do," Henriques said on the eve of the Final.

"I wasn't surprised of the quality of ball striking to be honest, he's got a very good cricket swing, there's no doubt with his power.

"But I also think we've got a very different bowling attack to the Strikers and I'm hoping our experience, and our nous can still keep him as retained as we did up at the Gold Coast.

"We've also got the great Stephen O'Keefe who we can let loose on him who it seems over the last few games he's kind of struggled facing as well."

KFC BBL|13 Finals Schedule

The Qualifier: Sydney Sixers beat Brisbane Heat by 39 runs

The Knockout: Adelaide Strikers beat Perth Scorchers by 50 runs

The Challenger: Brisbane Heat beat Adelaide Strikers by 54 runs

The Final: Sydney Sixers v Brisbane Heat, January 24, 7.15pm AEDT, SCG