oakley cricket

Stumped For Choice? How To Choose Sunglasses For Cricket

So we are fully into the 2015 summer cricket scene, many of us are just restricted to viewing just our National sides, or being spurred on by the big occasions such as The Ashes, but to others the desire to don the Whites and set off to the local pitch – either to take part or settle down under a tree – for an afternoon of jovial semi-serious banter and bravado, is where the heart lays.

For those slightly more active in their local club and leagues there is the perpetual issue each season – do I wear sunglasses or do I present the more traditional Old Boys image and squint like a cat all summer long?

Well, clearly cats get a good deal in the summer (well all year round some might say) settling down in the best spots and only peering through cats eyes if the local dog starts sniffing at the bush its hiding under or its out hunting. Its a good life and one many of us may wish to copy, however

That said we don’t think its advisable to compare your needs to those of the cat, not least in the vision department because the very physical structure of the eye is so widely different to that of our own. So, when the sun’s high we both need to take action. The cat’s got the mechanics all sewn up here, we mere humans need assistance in order to protect and minimise strain in this area.

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Cricket Sunglasses

So, in cricketing terms (I hadn’t forgotten) what are the key features and areas to look out for when considering options?

Firstly, check for UV filtering. Its paramount that you do not expose your eyes to this, it reduces the longevity of all the functioning parts of your eye, but unfortunately you aren’t directly aware of the impact of UV until its too late. You can be blinded by what you can’t see. Don’t just look for one UV version, make sure you are covered for all – so its UVA, UVB and harmful blue light. Of course if you consider Oakley, then you know you are always covered and even if the lens gets scratched it doesn’t stop the UV protection as its inherent in the plutonite lens material they use. Winner.

Secondly, clarity. The simple way to put this over is that in general the cheaper sports frames are not optically correct and will create distortion. Again you might not notice this at first but your eyes will strain from trying to compensate for bad clarity that these lenses present. These strains can result in headaches and loss of performance as the muscles overwork constantly to rectify. So check the brand is promoting optical clarity (or similar), its vital.

Impact resistance… You might not be facing Fidel Edwards or Mitchell Johnson at your crease, but you are probably more likely to face a Beamer there than anywhere else! As such, please make sure your frame and lens material can cope with either large red ball shaped missiles coming at your head. A good frame will flex to absorb the impact but the lens will not shatter.
Finally, like most sports that happen over a long period of time, you often need the flexibility in sunglasses to change the lens you are using to suit the weather conditions. Now we know that in cricket you aren’t going to head out with your bat, box and a huge array of lenses for the umpire to hang on to, he doesn’t mind the odd hat to don on your behalf but giving him half a dozen lens options is a step too far. So we generally tend to recommend just a few options:

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Flat light: VR28 generally comes out on top here from the Oakley range. It increases contrast thanks to its blue light filter, it will also enhance your depth perception.
G30 is another of Oakley’s Sport Performance lenses. Its a rose based lens that works great in these conditions and hosts a subtle Iridium coating. Again, good at providing depth perception.
Bright light: The VR28 won’t do a bad job here,  it will definitely cut the glare for you. However by opting for the Black Iridium coating to the VR28 you are covering the bases in a better way for these conditions.

As ever with Oakley there are a number of styles that fit this overall picture, look for the ever popular M Frame, or move into the realms of the Radar or Radarlock depending on how much you want set trends or tongues wagging.

So, there we go. Cricket sunglasses in a nutshell. The theory will work in the outfield or off the field altogether, even underneath that tree that has your name on it.

Tea anyone?