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100 not out!

It's a proud day for the newsletter, with this edition bringing up three figures and we can all raise our bats to the crowd.

That means if you have been reading since day one you have had 500 articles, videos and podcasts covering every aspect of cricket playing and coaching. Not bad.

But even better, we are giving away a coaching course from PitchVision Academy to further celebrate. Take a look at the 2nd article this week for details on what to do to enter the draw.

And of course, business continues as usual with articles on how to bowl a yorker, the upside of intense coaching camps, thoughts on ego and how to stop choking.

Have a great weekend,

David Hinchliffe

Is your ego holding you back?

PitchVision elite coach Gary Palmer has coached a lot of players at different stages of their career and he has noticed how ego can get in a player's way.

In this exclusive video, Gary tells us why it's important to drop the ego if you want to be the best player you can be.

Click here to view the video now.

Transcript of the video:

"One of the key things about working with these young lads is that, because they respect our point of view, because we have played at a high level or we've got the coaching qualifications or we are older, when you tell them to do something they back what we are saying. They just get on and do it and the progress really quickly.

"That is nice and simple and a fast way of getting better.

"What can happen with players, when they get into the big time playing county or international cricket, is suddenly they start to think 'I've got a better way of doing things'. Or they keep questioning what you are telling them all the time and they are not taking things on board as simply and as quickly as they could. That is when the process of becoming a better player and being successful and consistent starts to break down.

"It's great if you are a player who has got a coach working with you that is crystal clear on what he wants you to do. He knows what he is doing. It works every time.

"How good is that?

"You tell me what to do. I do it. I get better. I get runs. Simple. And if I was a player I would like a coach to come up to me and say 'Gary, do this to your technique, this for the mental side, this should be your tactics, these are your goals.' Crystal clear, nice and easy, do it and move on.

"But the minute players start to get egos, it's very difficult to coach them and the only person that loses out long term is the player."

If you would like coaching from Gary Palmer, CCM Academy is enrolling for 2010-11 now. Click here for details.

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Win an online coaching course to celebrate 100 editions

It's not often you get to a hundred, but as this is the ton up edition of the newsletter I thought I would celebrate with a giveaway to the loyal readers.

So here is the deal.

I want to give someone an online coaching course from PitchVision Academy, the best online cricket Academy in the world.

There are courses on every skill you could want from some of the experts in their fields:

  • Derek Randall on fielding
  • Ian Pont and Andy Caddick on fast bowling
  • Mike Brearley on captaincy
  • Gary Palmer on batting

As well as courses on spin bowling, wicketkeeping, fitness, psychology and even umpiring.

How to win the prize
The competition is simple to enter.
  1. Hit "forward" and send this email to a cricketing friend/family member who does not currently get the newsletter.
  2. Then get that person to forward the email to me on micricketcoach@pitchvision.com (making sure they put your name and email address in so I can track you down)
  3. That's it!

You can enter as many times as you like but each email has to come from a different friend. There is no restriction to entry (apart from you have to have friends who can use email).

Just think how handy all those facebook friends and twitter followers will come in.

The winner will be drawn at random from all entries and the judge's decision is final. It's miSport ltd. Who are running the whole thing.

Good luck and see you in another 100 editions! 


Can you benefit from an intense cricket training camp?

PitchVision elite coach Ian Pont has announced the MCI International Cricket Camp in South Africa in December 2010 for talented players. It's the first time the camp has been open to non-professionals.

In this interview, Ian gives us the lowdown on why intense camps are so beneficial.

PV: What are the main benefits of going on an intense camp?

IP: The great thing is that learning can be sequenced and built up over the time without the breaks you get in weekly sessions. By having continual coach feedback you can make instant improvements.

Also the camp itself becomes a valuable resource where the group develops individuals' attitudes. There's nothing quite like feeling part of a high level camp to assist with confidence, understanding and growth.

PV: What is a typical day like on a camp?

IP: The days are varied. They can include matches, nets, video analysis, lectures and individual attention based on scenarios. Players have a great focus and so develop their game with technical and tactical input to ensure they make good decisions and acquire new skills.

PV: How much of a technical difference can you make to bowling actions and batting shots in a short, intense period like at the camp?

IP: Most players don't spend long enough thinking about their technical skills - they think more about outcomes; runs and wickets. So an intense camp can have a huge difference to the skill levels to any player with the time to work at then under specialised guidance.

PV: How important is a player's attitude and work ethic in making a success of an intense camp?

IP: I have found that players raise their game when they attend a camp. People want to maximise their time and ability. There would be little point coming all that way if you don't want to be there! The intensity of exposure to cricket means the whole group gel and bond.

PV: What kind of preparation should a player attending the camp undertake before he arrives?

IP: Fitness is the main thing. Get fit to bowl and bat for 8 days in the heat.

PV: It must be easy for players to return to old habits when they get back and waste what they have learned. What's the best way to keep the benefits of a camp when getting back to the dead of winter in the UK?

The great thing about camps is that it becomes clear what a player should be working on next. We identify weaknesses and help set up how to improve them. Once back in the UK those training drills and grooving should be worked on.

PV: How can camps help players to be tactically astute even under pressure?

IP: The great thing about playing cricket at a controllable camp is we can stop and rerun scenarios. You cannot do this on a cricket tour for example, which is why a camp always offers far more benefits. We can put players in a situation to help them work out what to do, what they did and how they could have done it better. I cannot think of anything better.

PV: Where is your camp?

IP: The University of Potchefstroom in South Africa. We chose it because Potchefstroom is a high altitude venue for elite level training. It's a centre of excellence and the cricket facilities are regularly used by first-class counties and professionals. Durham used the venue for pre-season last year for example. It was also used for the World Cup 2011 qualifiers and has excellent pitches, training, gym and accommodation available.

It's clear anyone can benefit from an intense training camp during the off-season. If you are a want to attend the MCI international Cricket Camp in South Africa click here for details.

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How to stop choking

It was the 25th September 2004. The English summer had passed on and autumn was in the air. But an ICC Champions Trophy final still needed to be played.

It was to be the scene of one of the greatest chokes in cricket history.

The West Indies had got off to a poor start chasing England's 217. After 17 overs they were 72-4 and wickets tumbled further until a hapless 147-8 put England firmly in the driving seat, moments from victory.

How To Bowl A Yorker

Yorkers are game changing balls.

Any bowler. On any pitch. At any time. You turn an innings around with the use of a good yorker or two. Ian Pont thinks they are so important that mastering one gives you a blank cheque for the IPL. But it's not just at the end of a Twenty20 game where they are destructive.

A yorker is a difficult ball to negotiate, even for well set batsman. You can bring it any time you want to upset the guy at the other end. You can use it to break a big partnership in longer games just as effectively as you can keep runs down at the death.

So if they are so useful, why don't we see them used more often?


About PitchVision Academy

Welcome to this week's guide to playing and coaching better cricket.

I'm David Hinchliffe and I'm Director of the PitchVision Academy team. With this newsletter you are benefitting directly from over 25 Academy coaches. Our skills include international runs and wickets, first-class coaching, cutting-edge research and real-life playing experience.


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Issue: 100
Date: 2010-05-28