How to Become a Self-Sufficient Cricketer | Cricket coaching, fitness and tips

How to Become a Self-Sufficient Cricketer

Do you need a coach to be a good cricketer?

Shane Warne didn't think so. He was famous for scoffing at coaching and encouraging players to rely on themselves to get better. He had a point. No one can help you once you walk onto the field, can they? You might as well learn how to do it yourself.

So what does the self reliant cricketer look like?

Learn critical skills

No one is an island. You need people to help you, even Shane Warne had Terry Jenner to tune him up. The difference is that good players are thoughtful about what advice to take, and what advice to ignore. You need to have e eyes and ears of an analyst.

You hear it time and time again from players with great talent: Kevin Pietersen talked to me about it, Mark Garaway talks in glowing terms about the mindset of two players he has coached, Alistair Cook and Graeme Smith. These players, alongside many others, challenge and question their advisors. They will try things if convinced but they will be secure enough to ignore things they don't see working.

Discover your character

It's a lot easier to do this if you have a better understanding of how you 'tick'. Your character is just as important as your talent, so understanding yourself will help you to know what will make you a successful cricketer.

What does this mean practically?

Say you are someone who is reluctant to change. You like your routines, you know they keep you level headed when others are losing their cool. It would be bad for you to make a large technical correction because you don't like feeling that way. You would be more inclined to keep your flaw and feel calmer at the crease, at least in the short term.

On the other hand, perhaps you love to tinker. Changes are part of improvement for you. You would adjust your grip five minutes before a deciding match if you felt it would help you. You are happy to go back if it's not working out, so can make these changes and still feel happy.

This is just one example. The point is that learning your character leads onto practical things; the best types of training, the fastest ways of learning and the most success. The first step - the very foundation - is who you are deep down.

So, how do you do that?

There's a lot been written on the topic, but in my mind it all boils down to putting in the hard work. Not in the nets (although that's crucial too) but in reflection.

Work out how you respond to things; both in feeling and in action. Chances are that you will spot some trends by simply keeping a journal.

Alongside this, look to expand your experiences. Learn new life skills that are not taught, especially if you are moving from child to adult life. Everything feeds back into reflection, review and understanding.

Of course, if you ask Warnie how he did it, he won't answer the same way.

But if you look at what he, and others, have done it is all about respectfully challenging ideas and learning about yourself. Warne understood that from an early age and made the most of himself. You have the power to do the same.

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