Meet Sedbergh’s New Girls’ Cricket Champion

Girls’ cricket is a popular, and growing, sport at Sedbergh. To help our girls develop, Sedbergh is delighted to be working with Arathy Jayapal. A talented cricketer herself, Arathy loves our world-class facilities and is excited to be helping our players improve.

What is the main focus of your role at Sedbergh?

To start with I’m learning the Sedbergh way of coaching, which includes having fun! I was trained in an environment where it [cricket] was way too disciplined, but here it’s more fun. I’m also getting used to the facilities that Sedbergh has; they’re amazing! We didn’t have a quarter of it when I was playing [for the state team in Kerala, India].

Do you have a particular coaching philosophy?

Definitely. I have three key pillars for my coaching, which are:

  • Keep it simple
  • Give me 100% effort
  • Show your passion for the sport

It’s the mindset that we really need to change because often girls don’t have the confidence and the will to win that the boys have in sport. Girls also need to have that champion mindset. So, when I’m coaching I need the mindset to be right. I don’t really mind if they miss a ball or miss a catch, I just need them to put in the effort. If you miss a ball, that’s fine. You just go and retrieve the ball and give it back to the fielder or the bowler or the keeper. We play for the team and that’s really important.

Are you expecting any challenges?

Yes. I mentioned that I was trained in a very disciplined environment where we were not allowed to have fun. It was a tough training environment but it did give me discipline and a fighting mentality – and I want Sedbergh players to have that too. So, while the girls are having fun and playing, which is great, I need there to be a balance. Have fun but still have discipline and passion to play. I really want the girls to enjoy cricket as much as I do.

After completing a Masters Degree in strength and conditioning – you have high-level understanding of how injuries develop. So, with your knowledge, is that something that you try to protect your players from?

Yes. I didn’t know about injury prevention [when playing]. So when I started coaching, one of the things that was in my mind was that I have gone through this [injury] and I don’t want my players to go through this. So, I want them to have fun, but also to be disciplined because it’s not just cricket or the skills that we want – it’s strength and conditioning, it’s diet, sleeping habits, everything is involved to be a better cricketer and a better athlete.

What is your favourite hobby?

I enjoy playing badminton and football; they’re fun and competitive but it’s a great alternative to cricket which I do all the time.

Now a fun question! Do you prefer ice-cream or cake? Vanilla or chocolate?

I’m not a big fan of sweets! I like spicy food. But, if I did have something then I’d choose vanilla.

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