Sunday, 17 January 2010

Setting targets

So as I set off on my journey of exploration into cricket proper, perhaps I ought to give some thought as to what it is I want to achieve.

Obviously first and foremost, if I am to get anywhere, I need to find a team and get into it. I'm told most of the teams round and about are often short of players, so hopefully this shouldn't be too difficult. I don't care about my position within the team, or the mediocrity of the league the team plays in, I just want to PLAY. Any team, anywhere.

From there on, whatever targets I set myself in terms of performance, I want above all to enjoy playing, and be enjoyable to play with, and against. I'm not the next Bradman, so I might as well play with a smile on my face. It's not life and death after all.

As for performance targets, I need to take it a step at a time. Right now, in batting terms I just want to get out in the middle and face a few balls, see what I'm up against and not be a complete ferret. From there on it'd be nice to score my first boundary, then aim to reach double figures for the first time, then once I've done that a few times think about 25 as the next target, and after that I can see whether I can aspire to anything greater. Certainly I'm not going to go the way of "Tom Redfern" and state an aim to score a century in 50 balls...

As for fielding, well I'll see what happens. I can only try my best so I'll just aim to be as energetic and enthusiastic as possible, give my team-mates all the encouragement (and advice maybe) I can, and give any catches that come my way my best efforts. I can't see myself as a demon slip fielder - when I was younger I had difficulty catching a cold - but never say never.

Dare I even think about bowling? Again, never say never but I don't at this point think I've any hope as a bowler. I'm pretty sure I haven't got the build or the endurance in my body to be any kind of fast or even medium pace bowler, but I might have a go at spinning and see how I get on. I think I have the head on me to think my way to delivering a good ball, but as to whether I can actually master the biomechanics of bowling what I intend to and bowling it consistently I'll just have to wait and see.

So to round it all up, my first task is to find a team either willing enough, desperate enough or just plain dumb enough to let me play for them, then to see what standard is reasonable for me to aim at and improve my game as much as I reasonably can. But my key aim is, as I said above, to enjoy playing, be enjoyable to play with, and be enjoyable to play against.

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