England paceman Stuart Broad has been closely working with the team psychologist and one of his dearest family members in a bid to prepare himself for the upcoming Test series. The Englishmen are all set to lock horns with the West Indies in a three-Test series, beginning at the Ageas Bowl from the 8th of July. The Old Trafford at Manchester would host the final two Tests.
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International cricket will finally set itself free from the agonising shackles of COVID-19 pandemic that halted the sport since March. Nevertheless, the players would have to adapt themselves to a new set of surroundings and practices for the time being. They would have to play without spectators, who often ramp up their energy levels. But the bowlers will find it most challenging as the use of saliva to shine the ball stands prohibited by the ICC in response to the risk of spreading of Coronavirus.
Stuart Broad, who would likely take the new ball with James Anderson stated that the match would feel slightly different without crowds. The 138-Test veteran added that he has already been seeking advice from the team psychologist as to where to ramp up the emotional level to use it to his advantage. Broad stated that he began to work on the same since June and wants to succeed in challenging circumstances.
“I think the games will feel a bit different with no crowds. International cricket certainly will be more of a mental test to make sure each player is right up for the battle, and I’m very aware of that. I’ve already spoken to our sports psychologist about creating a bit of a mindset around making sure I can get my emotions up to where they need to be for me to be at my best. I’ve got to make sure my emotions are where they need to be for an international Test match, and that’s something I started working on in early June,” Stuart Broad stated as quoted by India Today.
Stuart Broad reveals the advice from his mother:
The Nottinghamshire seamer also disclosed the guidance from his mother for the upcoming challenges. Michelle Broad asked his son to walk down the memory lane, thinking back to the time when Stuart was 12 years old. Stuart Broad stated that his mother told him as a young boy, all he ever wanted to do was play cricket anywhere he could.
In a nutshell, Michelle Broad advised his son to have the mentality of being excited to have the opportunity to play and live it to the fullest. That particular mindset gives an athlete plenty of energy. At present, Stuart Broad is the second-highest wicket-taker for England in Tests with 485, behind James Anderson, who has 584 in 150 fixtures.
“My mum said something to me before I left. She said: ‘take yourself back to being a 12-year-old kid when all you wanted to do was to play cricket anywhere you could’. I have a coffee in the morning overlooking a Test match ground: if you’d have offered me that as a 12-year-old – probably not a coffee back then – I’d have been buzzing. I’d have been so excited.
[It’s about] trying to get that mindset of, yes, we’re playing a Test match for England, but when you were a 12-year-old kid, you’d have done anything to play cricket. Do you remember opening the curtains when there was a bit of rain on a Saturday? It was like heartbreak. It’s trying to have that mindset of it being exciting just to have the opportunity to play and have some fun. It actually gives you a bit of energy when you think like that,” the veteran swing bowler added.