Normally just a training aid suggested by his batting coach and former Western Australia cricketer Bob Meuleman, also a noted squash player, Gilchrist took it one stage further during the World Cup.
"I had a squash ball in my bottom-hand to help with my grip in training and I decided in this World Cup to use it in a match.
"His (Meuleman's) last words to me when I left the training centre in Perth were that if I was going to use it to make sure it was to score a hundred in the World Cup final and to prove it was in there," explained Gilchrist, who gestured to the dressing room with his glove when he got his hundred.
The 35-year-old keeper's innings was the highest individual score in a World Cup final, surpassing the 140 not out made by Australia captain Ricky Ponting four years ago in Johannesburg.
It meant Australia, victors by 53 runs on the Duckworth/Lewis method, had become the first side to win three successive finals and had now gone 29 games unbeaten at the tournament.
Gilchrist's astounding display saw him strike eight sixes and 13 fours in just 104 balls, the Western Australia gloveman justifying his reputation as the most dangerous batsman currently in the one-day game after being outshone by opening partner Matthew Hayden, this World Cup's leading scorer, for much of the time in the Caribbean.
"It meant a great deal," said Gilchrist, now only one of three players along with Ponting and retiring Australia quick Glenn McGrath to have won three World Cups after starring in the side's 1999 and 2003 triumphs.
"It's been a bit of a frustrating tournament for me personally. I've got a lot of 30s and 40s and a few low scores so I'd been contributing to a partnership without really nailing a big one myself."
However, Gilchrist's innings threatened to be eclipsed by the chaotic scenes at the end of the game where Sri Lanka were incorrectly told by officials they had to bat out the final three overs in pitch black darkness or come back Sunday after going off for bad light.
"We're not letting the events at the end tarnish anything this team has achieved. We've had 29 undefeated World Cup games, and the way we've played our cricket here and what we've achieved has been phenomenal. "
Ponting, at the crease when his record was broken, was in no doubt about the quality of Gilchrist's innings.
"As far as I'm concerned he hasn't played a better one. To go out and do it in a World Cup final and hardly miss the middle of the bat, it's one of the best innings you'll ever see.
"There was one difference between the two sides and that was his innings."
But Gilchrist said he wasn't about to enjoy a 'fairytale' finish to his one-day career.
"My plan is to carry on playing. I'm getting closer to Glenn's situation, but I've said all along that I would never make a decision on my career when I'm really down and flat or really high on emotion."