Pitchvision Academy


Coaching is at the forefront this week with ex-England Assistant Coach Mark Garaway becoming the official voice of coach education in the newsletter. His “Coaching to Win” series is now a regular part of your weekly update; starting with this week’s revelation that club cricket can teach you a thing or two about coaching elite players.

Who would have thought it?

Plus we look at sledging, team roles and what you can do to help the captain.

Have a great weekend, 

David Hinchliffe

How a Friendly Cricket Club Taught Me to Coach the England Team

In 1983, I moved to the Isle of Wight.

Ventnor Cricket Club quickly became my second home. At the time they were playing only friendly fixtures.

It was a million miles away from the 21st century England team which I would go on to become Assistant Coach.

Yet looking back, many of the mindsets that I now have in my coaching were developed at Steephill Cricket Ground.

I would spend my summer days running the scorebook, bowling at a stump in nets and hoping that one player would forget to turn up so I could field in his place.

Long chats in the pavilion would occur between players, supporters, scorers, Presidents and vice-presidents; everyone’s focus was on getting better, on excellence. We would talk for hours about each of our players and suggests ways that each of us could improve by 5% and as a consequence, the team would improve too.

As a result the club grew up as I made my way through the teams to the first XI. It’s now one of the leading teams in the top-level Southern Premier League, has developed many first-class cricketers and has its own Indoor Cricket Centre at the ground. 

Seeing the success of the club first hand formed the basis of my own philosophy: “relentless pursuit of excellence”.

Relentless Pursuit of Excellence

My life as within professional cricket as a player and coach has given me opportunity to build on that foundation.

As I moved from playing for Hampshire through Academy Coach, County 2nd XI Coach, County 1st XI Coach, England Assistant Coach all the way to Performance Analyst and Performance Director with Ireland I picked up experiences, tools, insights, facts and evidence that let me support players personal pursuit of excellence.

And because all my professional knowledge was developed from the seed of club cricket, the same learning from the elite game is easily transferred back into club and school level.

In 2009, I played and coached Chard CC in Somerset for a summer.

I said to the players that I would use the same coaching techniques with them as I did with Somerset adn England and the players took it all on board, absorbed themselves in the notion of the pursuit of excellence, bought into feedback and review.

 As a result they won their first trophy in 20 years.

They have since gone on to win the next league as well.

Coaching to Win

So in a nutshell, my coaching is based on the idea that anyone can improve; everyone has development areas that if acted upon can significantly enhance their experience and results from the game. 

Everyone wins.

I will provide you with the options and tips through the Pitchvision Academy to help you coach players through that journey with articles, podcasts and online courses.

I’ll also introduce you to a few of my friends and colleagues from international cricket that will let you know their secrets and informed insights and to help you become a better coach.

You will be easily able to spot my advice as we have created a new section on the site called Coaching to Win. You can keep up to date with it by getting the free weekly PitchVision newsletter.

With my help, you can gain the knowledge to turn your own club or school team into a side that is successful as Ventnor CC has become over the last 30 years. 

Discuss this article with other subscribers

Team Roles: Cricket Teams are More Than Bowlers and Batsmen

Selection as I see it isn’t just selecting your best eleven players.

If you want the team to play to their full potential selection needs to be specific to roles; and that goes beyond just whether you excel with bat or ball.

The best sides are never made up of the best eleven cricketers in the club, but are balanced and split into complimenting formulas.

For example - in the professional game - selectors have been known to select a side on the basis:  40% reliable players, 40% players in form and 20% flair players.

This works because breaking their side down into more than just batsman and bowlers allows the players to understand what they need to do when they are in the middle.

  • The flair players are there to impact quick and hard; the classic pinch-hitter or nasty fast bowler. The leash is off. They know they will not be admonished for getting out to a loose shot or bowling a half volley when trying to get it to swing.
  • The reliable players are there to steady the side and progress the game safely: the opening batsman who sees off the new ball, and the metronomic medium pacer.
  • The form players are there to consistently perform and cement the game together.

The flair batsman who scores incredibly quickly and often over a quick period is best used at specific times during an innings so has to “float” through the order. Without a clear role, he will be demotivated by the decision of the captain not to include him in the concrete line up.

But with a clear role, he will feel like he is a vital part of the innings: same situation, different frame.

Helping each player to understand what they should bring to the game helps them perform their role in the side. 

It takes a captain who knows how to communicate and a well-selected team who understand the importance of acting as a team, but by building up the idea that roles go far beyond just batting and bowling the victory is guaranteed.

With the whole side fulfilling their roles well you are - in modern lingo - executing your game plan. 

Discuss this article with other subscribers

Cricket Show 133: Coaching to Win (Plus Free Bonus)

Mark Garaway gets the big fanfare this week as he launches his “Coaching to Win” coach education section on the site, and the podcast is a big part of the action.

We talk about the importance of continuing education for coaches and the DRS at club level.

Gary Palmer returns for the 2nd part of his interview on batting coaching where he talks more about applying his principles from grass-roots to elite levels.

And we answer your questions on pre-match batting drills and trigger moves.

In fact, the trigger move discussion went on so long we had to cut most of it out of the show, but it was also fascinating debate so we couldn’t leave it on the cutting room floor.

If you want to listen to the full 17 minutes of the trigger move discussion you can download it by clicking here.

The rest of the show is in the usual place. 

How to Get in Touch With the Show

Our contact email can be found here.

Use our twitter or facebook accounts.

Or you can call and leave a message (it’s an answer phone, not manned but we check it every day). If it’s a good story or question we will call you back for a chat.

  • UK  +44 (0) 208 816 7691
  • AUST: +61 (02) 8005 7925
  • USA: +1 347 722 1981

How to Listen to the Show

You can download the show onto your computer by right clicking on the link below and choosing "Save Target as..."

You can also subscribe to the show:

Subscribe to the show in Itunes

Click here to subscribe in iTunes.

If you don't use iTunes You can add the feed manually.

Discuss this article with other subscribers

5 Ways to Help the Captain Motivate Your Team

It’s not just the captain’s responsibility to motivate the side when on the field.

He has lots things to be thinking about during the fielding session, so here are 5 ways you can assist him  by taking the job of head cheerleader.

Mindful Encouragement

It is such an obvious place to start, but so many teams don’t do it well.

Many teams have a bit of chat in the field but mostly without meaning.

Mind the Windows Tino: How to Turn Mindless Chatter into Mental Disintegration

Are you an intelligent effective sledger or simply an abusive unoriginal fool?

We have all come across the person who states the obvious facts about the batsman’s weight, equipment or even their hair style.

Sometimes it’s quite funny. Especially the first time you hear the classic line as the overweight batter walks in, “Watch for the quick singles here.”

But by crossing the line of personal abuse the fielder is wasting his time.


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.


Take a tour
Want Coaching?

Send to a Friend

Do you have a friend or team mate who would be interested in this newsletter? Just hit "forward" in your email program and send it on.

If you received this email from a friend and would like to get subsequent issues, you can subscribe here.


PitchVision Academy

irresistable force vs. immovable object

Thank you for subscribing to PitchVision Academy.
Read more at www.pitchvision.com


To unsubscribe eMail us with the subject "UNSUBSCRIBE (your email)"
Issue: 172
Date: 2011-10-14