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Author Topic: The mental side of cricket...  (Read 172 times)

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DorsetDan

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The mental side of cricket...
« on: November 08, 2018, 08:54:48 PM »

Following on from the excellent SKY series Mind Games I've been curious to learn more about the mental side of cricket. It also ties in nicely with my wife starting a new role where she uses a lot if the techniques and treatments mentioned in Mind Games such as the rewind that helped Robin Smith back on track.

With all the history of some of the best players in the world having quite serious problems and the strange dynamic that goes on within an individual and between teams/ players, particularly with batting, it is both fascinating and terrifying how our strange team sport of individuals works some times.

Anyway, I thought I'd start a thread to be added to as things crop up. I found this video about Benny Howell quite interesting
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DY8I6kVke_M

Some things that jumped out (not direct quotes but you get the gist) are when he talks about cricket being a sport where you fail more than you succeed and you have to learn to accept that and work with it and also that a lot of the guys who do well aren't thinkers and they have a fantastic ability to exist in the present. It almost goes against many of our instincts for perfection or desperation for runs but is such simple common sense. We probably all know that but forget it far too often. I've been trying a few things and some of the relaxation techniques make a massive difference to being able to accept what has happened and genuinely treat the next ball as a fresh event rather than try to manufacture that feeling or focus. Bit of a ramble but fascinating stuff

There's a lot more there that is interesting but gives a starter. Hopefully it is an interesting watch and if you come across anything else feel free to add it to the thread :)

« Last Edit: November 09, 2018, 09:04:01 AM by DorsetDan »
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mohawks94

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Re: The mental side of cricket...
« Reply #1 on: November 09, 2018, 05:57:44 AM »

The head of Bucks player development, also high up in the Northants academy, has written a book about psychology in sport.

https://www.amazon.com.au/Pressure-Myths-Performance-Psychology-Simple-ebook/dp/B07BMCGWPN/ref=mp_s_a_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1541742925&sr=8-1&pi=AC_SX118_SY170_QL70&keywords=Pressure+myths+rich+hudson&dpPl=1&dpID=51pgP3pmgYL&ref=plSrch

Havent personally read it but knowing Rich reasonably well its going to be well written and he really knows his stuff.
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DorsetDan

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Re: The mental side of cricket...
« Reply #2 on: November 09, 2018, 09:03:17 AM »

Another things that stuck with me was when Nasser Hussain said he only ever had one innings in his entire career where he felt in control batting.

That was really striking for me as you think that these hugely talented players must have more better days than bad days. I don't know about you, but my instinct when batting is to try and gain some control or have a feeling of being in control- ultimately a fruitless task with all the variables at play!

This is where I think the relaxation really helps and ties in with Howell's outlook and acceptance cricket is a sport with more failure than success- The relaxation stuff it isn't just an airy fairy fluffy thing, rather a way to really exist in the present when batting and accept whatever happens and keep cracking on without it affecting you. You can't manufacture that at will, but have to work at making that normal.

That is really quite unique about cricket and especially batting where the consequence of small mistakes are often so high and conventional sports performance psychology doesn't really cover it.

It doesn't help that cricket is an overwhelmingly negative sport and it is easy to get stuck in downward cycles. You hear everyone talk about what certain players can't do and their recent failings but very little about their qualities and success but that is another story... (not batting related but) I think it was Ambrose who said once he got of a cricket pitch the last thing he wanted to do was think about cricket and he went straight out to play basketball.. he probably has it right to be honest!

« Last Edit: November 09, 2018, 09:05:40 AM by DorsetDan »
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DorsetDan

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Re: The mental side of cricket...
« Reply #3 on: November 09, 2018, 09:23:03 AM »

How easy is it to keep plodding on and keep making the same mistakes? Very I'd say! Doesn't anyone here routinely stop and think about what they are doing?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VsrzUDX6kHw

How much coaching advice have you had in your coaching career from coaches, experts, mentors, etc?
Darryl Steyn: About 100 pieces
How many of those pieces of advice really made a difference?
Darryl Steyn: One maybe two

"The best players in the world take responsibility for their own reflection, analysis and planning"

How many other sports have coaches who ultimately are directed by the players? Yet another addition to the bizarre dynamic of cricket :) Ultimately very simple advice but also very true
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