Psychology | Cricket coaching, fitness and tips

Some rules for junior cricketers

What are the main things a junior player should be trying to do every time he or she plays a game?

Here is a list of the rules I have come up with from my experience as a coach. Every team will have its own set of rules. This list is just a start. Remember rules require discipline. Playing with discipline will contribute to success at any level.

Cricket Show 50: Confidence

miCricketCoach - PitchVision miCricketCoach Show 050.mp3
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The miCricketCoach show reaches its half century this week with a majestic pull through midwicket before raising its bat in quiet celebration. The focus of the show this week is on confidence on the cricket pitch. Kevin celebrates in the rain and Ian Pont is back with another fast bowling tip.

How a step up in intensity can win you the league

Cricket is a game of the mind as much as the body. Emotions have a direct effect on your game. If you know how to tap into the right intensity you could end up winning the league with your team like mine did this season.

It was the last game of the season. We were top of the table by the smallest margin. We needed a win to be sure of gaining the league title. The team in second were unbeaten and unlikely to cave in at this late stage.

Get more runs and wickets by acting like a tailor

Have you ever seen a tailor make a suit?

It's a systematic process of fittings, measurements and adjustments to get the perfect fit to your shape. It's a method that has worked to produce the finest suits in existence and it's one you can adapt to improve your cricket.

Just like a tailor, you can maximise your training and preparation so it becomes perfect for you. Also like making a suit, there is no simple way to reach perfection right way. It takes time, effort and attention to detail.

Why the will-to-win takes more than a dressing room pep-talk

The captain is in the dressing room before the game giving his team a last minute talk.

He tells the boys that they have the talent and ability to beat this lot. All that needs to happen is this: Stay focused and switched on for the entire game. Let the will-to-win take us over the line.

Why most winning cricket teams are lucky (and what to do if you are unlucky)

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You could say England's 1st Ashes Test victory was the result of a great deal of luck; especially if you are Australian.

Ponting out caught off the pad, Hughes out caught just off the ground (where TV replays look dubious) and Katich out caught off a no-ball that wasn't given: A bad few days at the office.

Cricket Show 38: Mental toughness

miCricketCoach - PitchVision miCricketCoach Show 038.mp3
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The theme of the show this week is mental toughness for cricket, inspired by the epic battle between England and Australia in the first Ashes Test. Ian Pont is back to talk about fielding for fast bowlers and David and Kevin talk about the pressures of playing. We also discuss:

How to be the best player at cricket trials

Love them or hate them, trial matches are used the world over to decide the fate of young cricketers.

They are the exams of the cricket world: Do well and you could be on your way to a professional contract. Mess up and... well, let's not think about messing up.

5 Ways to deal with big match pressure as well as Ashes cricketers

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Is there anyone in cricket with more pressure on them than the players of Australia and England at the start of an Ashes series?

It's certainly far more stress than you or I have experienced as cricketers (unless you happen to be MS Dhoni). However, even club players feel pressure situations: Finals (maybe even on TV), league deciders and even the local derby where you play out your own mini Ashes-style rivalry.

Ask the readers: What would increase your mental toughness?

How often do we hear of top players with ability but without the mental strength to fight through?

To me, this demonstrates how cricket, at every level, can be a game of confidence. Technique, talent and fitness are important, but without the ability to ride success and shrug of failure it's all worthless.

With that in mind my question to you is:

How mentally tough are you and what would you like to learn about to improve it?