This is an exclusive excerpt from How to Become A Cricketer, from IPL Coach Monty Desai. For more information about the videos and eBooks, click here.
When we are looking for players at cricket trials there are some important qualities beyond runs and wickets and stat figures.
First, how is he able to perform under pressure? You might have all the skills, but can you do it under pressure? For example, you have been given an opportunity in a trial where you'll end up bowling in a death over. If you are able to execute yorkers under this pressure you look good.
Imagine the extra pressure at a trial of a coach questioning you after every ball; asking what is your next thinking? You say you're going to bowl a slow one. Then you are able to execute the slow one very well. So, that means that you are have the skills to execute under pressure. That will become a very big quality for you.
Then, it's about your behaviour throughout the trial: How you are moving around. Is there a "team man" quality in you? When you are not bowling, are you also throwing your body around as a fielder? Sometimes you might not be performing but you can be the person who is making an effort stopping the balls for someone else. Say the other bowler is bowling brilliantly and you haven't bowled a great over, but you'll take a brilliant catch for him. So, you have contributed.
It could be sometimes you are not playing in the trials but you are outside and you're just running around to give water to your team mates. You're also there to enjoy other's success and support them. So, when it comes down to comparing two players who both have performed equally well, we will choose the cricketer who can come in and enhance the team with personal character and off the field qualities. It will be a huge bonus.
It might not turn up on the stats but the people around you in the dressing room know that you have contributed for the team. We've known people who have just chipped-in in their game, like they might have only end up scoring 20 odd runs for the team, but have contributed in the wins in other ways. It's a quality which is needed in team environment.
You can have a person, who is only a selfish guy. He is only looking for himself. IN the long run the team suffers and you don't want the team to suffer. We cannot encourage "I," we want to have more "We's." There is a role played by someone as an opening batsman, but there is also a role played by someone as a tail-ender who is hanging in there. You have to credit to a person who is scoring a hundred, but you have to credit to tail-ender who is hanging around with you on the other side making sure that you score your hundred. If you bowl, your role might be to keep the line tight. You have contributed by creating pressure from the other side. You have helped the other bowler to pick up wickets.
It's the job of that person who's picked up five wickets, as a character, to go and thank the person on the other side who created that pressure for you. If you are not able to acknowledge that then there is something wrong with you.
For more information about the videos and eBooks on this course, click here.