Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Get your ‘thinking’ right from an early age Most people know from an early age what level they want to aim at within their sport – most aim high whet

Get your ‘thinking’ right from an early age

Most people know from an early age what level they want to aim at within their sport – most aim high whether they are prepared to work at it or not. Initially, enthusiasm carries them along a certain road to begin with and then they find that effort and guidance then has to kick-in if they want to progress. Cricket is such a complex game, with many different departments, and until a certain level of physical growth is achieved (say 11 or 12 years old) my tip is to purely enjoy the game for all it has to offer.

The horrible gambling scenario, and current news story surrounding the young Pakistani bowler, Mohammed Aamer, has highlighted him and just what can be reached at a young age. He was the youngest bowler ever in test cricket to reach 100 wickets. From the age of 15 he has been performing at high levels within cricket suggesting that he worked on the right things from an early age. Bad habits can hold a young player back and make change difficult, in the same way that a crease in a pair of trousers ironed heavily in the wrong place, can prove very hard to take out. Correct coaching, not only shows the right way carry out certain points, but can also give you the right frame of mind and attitude. I was lucky I had two elder brothers who were bigger, better and stronger than me, so I was always working hard just to keep up with them – fortunately I also has some good players around to show me how.

One promise – whatever you put into cricket, you will take out and plenty more. But effort and work has to be ’put-in’ first. Go for it!!

So much more than a few inches over the line!!!

When a slogan under a cartoon in the paper reads “This is the BBC’s sports desk giving you tomorrow’s cricket results” you know that the joke is more than cricket can take. I don’t think I will see another Pakistan home international being played in my lifetime and with the horrendous flood scenario in Pakistan the guilty four players could hardly have done their country more harm. With the bowlers overstepping the line to order makes this ‘cheating to order’ even more vile but it is just another nail in the Pakistani cricket coffin. If only that were true in isolation. All cricket and cricketers have suffered along with their relevant Governing bodies. I am worried that the British public will show their discontent by not attending the very important one day internationals we have to come. Pakistan certainly cannot afford it!

However, the Pakistan Cricket Board has so much to answer for, as it cannot be a coincidence that they have had so many captains, that even the keen spectator loses count. The disarray of this Board is not entirely unsuspected with all the political overtones and involvement that it has to endure.

Many of their players get paid ‘peanuts,’ and with some of them coming from very poor backgrounds, that ‘dangled’ money, even at this lowly level waved in front of them, is just too much for them to refuse. The whole integrity of cricket suffers and, if found guilty, the players MUST suffer a life-time ban. The lose/lose scenario is made even worse when considering the tremendous potential that a player like Mohammed Aamer has and the rewards he is likely to receive in his international career, as surely, at age 18, he would have become a world class bowler in a short space of time.

The ICC has to act strongly here as, in the past, Pakistani players have received lifetime bans only for the Pakistan Board to revoke this decision at a later date. Pressure must be put on the Pakistan Cricket Board to act in a proper manner with a threat of expulsion from International cricket if this happens again. The drug cheats in athletics are thrown out – this is cricket’s life threatening drug problem!!