It seems a fitting time to meet Billy May, as he will be running our bowling clinics and camps this Easter with some private coaching sessions here and there. Have a read below to get to know more about Billy and we hope that you enjoy getting to know our coaches as the meet the coaches series continues over the coming months.
ECB Level: 2
Full time job (if not cricket coaching): PE Teacher
What inspired you to become a cricket coach, and how did you get started in the field?
My goal is to inspire and ignite the fuel for the next generation of young people through the beautiful game that is cricket! I got started around 12 years old by going to nets sessions at school which progressed into local village side Frogmore in Park Street and then through the county route to debuting for Herts in 2019. I have played premier league for Harpenden and Hemel Hempstead and now at championship side St Albans city.
What is the thing you like about working with Cricket Vision?
I enjoy and can relate to the concept of Cricket Vision moving with technology and love the fact that it has a good network through the Home Counties which is only growing as the years go on.
What do you believe are the key elements that make a successful cricket player, and how do you work to develop those skills in your players?
I believe there are three main qualities needed to be a successful player.
1. The ability to be patient. Cricket is a sport that isn’t learnt overnight, the more curious the better in my opinion! 2. You have to be resilient as there will be ups and downs. I’m constantly finding things out about my game after 12 years. 3. Focus on the simple things like hand-eye coordination. Cricket is a simple game made difficult by over complication, so remember to keep it simple!
How do you stay current with the latest trends and techniques in cricket coaching, and what resources do you rely on for professional development?
I’m a big fan of T20s particularly the IPL and big bash. Cricket’s definitely moving in a way that the game uses a different mentality which is good to keep the interest levels high. I use video footage to give feedback to players in order to support my coaching points. I always carry a coaching kit bag around with my three favourite pieces of equipment: a mitt, Skyer bat and sidearm! My philosophy is to always try to focus the session around the player and what areas they need to work on (age dependent) as it’s important for our young people these days to self assess and highlight areas for improvement for their self development. For me fielding is arguably the most important so I try to use drills and activities that test those areas, kind of like a work hard play hard mentality whilst keeping it fun of course.
What advice would you give to aspiring cricket coaches, and to parents of young players looking for a coach?
You have to want to do it. Positivity is infectious and that has to flow throughout you. Advice to parents would be to listen to feedback from your child- it’s their session after all.
How do you balance the technical and tactical aspects of the game with the mental and psychological aspects of the game?
Allow time to work on all areas equally, having said that, the mental side of the game for me is greater so I would spend more time thinking of bowling plans on how I’d dismiss their best batsman or trying to gee myself up for the game using self talk- it’s up to the individual of course.
Which cricket ground is the best you have played on?
Arundel castle in Sussex
Have you ever been on any tours and if so where?
No tours thus far but I’d love to play in Australia one day
Predictions for the Ashes this year?
2-1 to England
What do you like to do away from coaching?
Long country walks, a good steak once in a while and a bit of Xbox