|I'm late because of this!|
|Can you see the similarity?|
Neither can I but it is there!
So you see I do have a good excuse. I was therefore needing a fairly quick puzzle to solve and write about for you. In my last batch from Puzzle Master, I had ordered a couple of the easier Hanayama cast puzzles, so I fetched one to solve as quickly as possible for this blog post. This one is the level 2 out of 6 (or 6 - Tricky, on the Puzzle Master 5-10 point scale) which I think is a reasonable assessment. Opening the usual beautiful packaging reveals a really lovely metal puzzle in an antique brass finish. It is 6.7 x 6.7 x 2.5 cm in size and seems rather finely made. The name Cast Cricket obviously comes from the fact that it is formed from the major parts of the game of Cricket. It consists of 6 cricket bats joined at the handles in an odd star-shape and linked into a wicket structure complete with Bails preventing it lifting out the top. For the Americans amongst you, see this article for a description of cricket. The aim is to find a way to remove the 6 bats from the wicket. Preventing it are a number of knobbles on one side or other of each bat (one of the bats looks like a skateboard with wheels on it at both ends) but to help you there is a gap in the central wicket and a notch in the centre one. Like all the Hanayama puzzles, it does not come with a solution and if you want one then it can be downloaded from here.
This puzzle only has an average rating on puzzle master of 2 out of 5 stars but I think this is due to one particularly scathing (and unfair) review of 0 stars from one person who felt it was too easy and fragile. The other reviews were much more favourable. This is an easy puzzle but not everyone wants something that takes months and if you don't want an easyish puzzle then why are you looking at a Hanayama level 2? Gabriel reviewed it back in 2012 and really enjoyed it whilst acknowledging the difficulty level.