New Delhi: Imagine a cricket ball weighing 163 grams coming towards your head after pitching at a rapid pace and you are too slow to react. Whatever may happen next is not a pretty sight for anyone! Even for a cricketer who trains extremely hard on how to react to a bouncer (or a beamer), there is a great risk for an injury or a concussion. Can a helmet work foolproof and provide safety to the batter?Also Read – Rishabh Pant's Gesture Towards Fans Ahead of Ind-SA 3rd T20I at Guwahati is Heartwarming; Watch VIRAL Video
Forma Helmets – one of the most popular helmet brand used by big names like Rishabh Pant, Suryakumar Yadav – answers some of our critical questions in an exclusive conversation with india.com. Also Read – Rohit Sharma-Rishabh Pant's Reaction Sums up Deepak Chahar's Dream Ball to Clean Bowled Temba Bavuma; Watch Viral VIDEO
Ques: What makes Forma Helmets distinct from it’s competitors? Also Read – India's Predicted Playing XI vs South Africa in 1st T20I at Trivandrum: Rishabh Pant, Arshdeep Singh Likely to Comeback in Rohit Sharma-Led Side
We have our tagline which is “Safety with Comfort & Style”. Safety is of primary importance to us since it is head safety. The Helmet is designed and built with a configuration of the outer shell made of high impact polymer with an inner concussion protection of high density expandable polystyrene. Both these are the primary components of safety within the helmet. They are tuned to an optimum level of thickness and density required in modern 360 degrees fearless cricket. The grill is also made of ultra-lightweight Titanium for our top players. Titanium is a material used in aerospace for its quality of high tensile strength and lightness.
Comfort – We are the only manufacturer that has a complete coverage of internal comfort lining across the entire inner shell. This gives the comfort feel on the players head and at the same time, gives extra surface area for sweat absorption.
Style- This is of great importance in modern cricket. It is important to give today’s players helmets which have smart design elements as it adds to their confidence.
Ques: There have been quite a few incidents which have questioned the safety of the batters in the game. What has forma done to make helmets more reliable?
There have been various unfortunate accidents involving head injuries with regards to the players. With all the points mentioned above relating to safety, we have always kept our helmet safety factor higher than the required impact requirements of the British Standards. Hence, this gives additional safety to our players.
Ques: How would you convince someone like Vivian Richards or Sunil Gavaskar to use your helmets considering they never wore one in their playing days?
We had made a skull cap for Sunil Gavaskar in our very initial years of our helmet manufacturing, since he was not comfortable with a helmet. His skull cap was made with a good level of safety factor. Vivian Richards had his own method of batting. I would feel with the new age of intensive and fast scoring cricket which t20 requires (reverse sweep, switch hit etc.), he would have been convinced to wear helmet.
Ques: Apart from safety, comfort is something which is essential for a batter/wicket-keeper to play the game? How is Forma different from others in that regard.
As mentioned before, comfort is an integral part of our product specification. We have the shell which is ergonomic to a human head. It is designed to give optimum fit to most players’ head shapes and sizes. Protech has 3 different shell sizes being used to make 5 head sizes. It is important to have multiple helmet shell sizes, especially for juniors which are mostly budding cricketers with small head sizes. Junior players require a small helmet shell which will not look too bulky on their heads and since the shell size is optimum to their head size, it will weigh less and make them feel comfortable to wear a helmet. It is very important for junior players to feel very comfortable with wearing helmet so that they get used to it when they evolve to be top national players. The other important feature in all our helmets is a full internal sweat absorbing foam lining. This ensures the most optimum level of comfort compared to any other cricket helmet currently in the market. As for the wicket keeping helmet, we have an additional cut at the back of the helmet that allows additional space required when a cricketer has to squat.
Ques: Do cricketers in SENA countries demand anything specific for their helmets in comparison to Asian players?
With the new British Standards which is very rigid in its certification process, making any sort of modifications in the helmet are forbidden. Hence, making any player related specific changes are almost impossible.