You’re truly desperate to become a cricketer. You watch your heroes on TV and dream of playing alongside them.
The trouble is that you don’t know where to start. Do you even have a chance or are you wasting your time with an impossible aim?
You know the numbers already; most people who play cricket never go on to even reach professional level. An even smaller number will ever reach international honours. Statistically it doesn’t look great.
You have passion and desire. You are prepared to do whatever it takes to reach the top. You are impervious to setbacks and you have youth on your side. With luck and squeezing out every ounce of talent you might just be able to join the cricketers who play professionally.
Let’s be honest about it though. The odds are slim. Less than 1 in 1500 cricketers make it. You need to be a very good player to even get a chance. There are always more people wanting to play than there are places in professional Academies and on team rosters.
The only way you are going to make it is to show how good you are in runs or wickets at your current level: work your way up through the levels through sheer weight of performance. Cricket may have its politics but no one can argue with heavy run scoring or wicket taking.
More than one chance
Often I get an email from cricketers asking for “just one chance”. The truth is that one chance is not how you become a cricketer
You need to get there through hard, deliberate practice and robust confidence. That combination feeds into on-field performances over a long period. There are no shortcuts, no one who is playing because they proved themselves once. It’s a 10 year marathon.
That’s also why it gets harder to make it as a cricketer every year you pass the age of 21. It takes a long time to master the game, so if you are not a long way down the path by this age, you won’t be able to get to the required standard before you get too old. Don’t rely on becoming the next Dirk Nannes.
People don’t arrive in professional cricket out of nowhere. There is always a story of hard work and overcoming setbacks. If you want to become a cricketer then be realistic. Look at your age, your background, your successes and your ability to overcome failures. Only then can you decide if you truly have a chance.