There is one mallet on the market that will make you a better straight ball shooter; if you know how to use it. These mallets, with their wishbone handle, are made by the Norwich Croquet Company in Norwich CT.

   In 1899, a small group of croquet enthusiasts from across the country met in Norwich to revise the old rules and to revitalize the game. They looked at court size, hoop counts, dimensions, and number of balls used; making appropriate, permanent changes to standardize the game.

   Almost 120 years later in Norwich, mallet maker Gordon Kyle is making some revolutionary changes to the game of croquet with his unique mallet handle and open center design as embodied in 2 models: the AirHeart and the AirGo.

   Kyles wishbone mallets are literally designed with no flex in the handle. This means you DO NOT have to get in a “crouch position” and put your bottom hand a couple of inches above the mallet head to make any roll shots. All these shots can be made in the standing position with your bottom hand never going below the top of the wishbone split. It’s all done with your stance and with the forward, downward angle that you make contact with your ball.

   The center of the mallet is open so that you can see the sightline as you stalk and cast over your ball. When stalking the ball, approach your ball in a straight line to your target, place your mallet behind your ball and then step back far enough to look through the wishbone and check if the sightline is on target. Make any adjustments and take you stance. Then, take a few casting strokes over the ball looking through the open center to see if you are swinging the mallet straight splitting the ball in two.

   If your alignment was correct, you are swinging straight over the ball and you make good contact with your ball, you will hit your target. A tip: Practice, practice and practice with these mallets and you will become a better straight ball shooter.

   –Ford Fay

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