The worst nightmare for any cricketer is losing their central contract. It not only leads to self-doubt but also makes them question whether they will ever make it back to the elite level. One such cricketer is Natasha Farrant, who had fears over her international career when she lost her central contract in 2019.
After going through this hard phase, the South East Stars captain is back in the fold and says that she has some unfinished business with England. Farrant has been recalled for the upcoming white-ball series in New Zealand after winning one of the 41 full-time regional contracts introduced into the women’s game last year.
On her comeback to the team, Natasha says, “In the past, if you lost your contract it was very hard to get back into the team so initially, I wasn’t that positive as to how I was going to be able to get back into the squad. But I think I knew that within myself – deep down, even if I didn’t want to tell myself – that I had some unfinished business in an England shirt.”
“I feel like I’m still young and I’ve got a lot to learn still so when I got over the initial disappointment of losing my contract and started to work on my game with specific one-to-one coaches – and obviously when the regional contracts came in that was a new lease of life for me. I wanted to work really hard to get back into the mix; I definitely wasn’t expecting it to be this soon to be honest but I’m really grateful to get the opportunity as I didn’t think it was going to come at one stage.”
Team England last played an ODI on Dec 14, 2019.
After more than a year, the girls are back in action this Tuesday. pic.twitter.com/ZNKx4yt4Y3
— Female Cricket (@imfemalecricket) February 20, 2021
Farrant, who has played 14 T20Is and 1 ODI for England, worked on herself and her game during her break. She had a stint as head of girls’ cricket at Trent College in Nottinghamshire, as a result of a recommendation from former England cricketer Lydia Greenway. She was also able to finish her education by completing her final year of study at Loughborough University, before taking up teaching.
Farrant says her comeback inspired a lot of people to not give up on their dreams, “When it was announced, I got some really lovely messages from people like Alex Hartley, Beth Langston, Holly Armitage for example – I think it kind of gave people a bit of hope that if they had been in the set-up and they are now out of it, that it is a sort of a marker and that they know that if they are performing well in the Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy or The Hundred, which is on the big stage, they are putting their name in the hat
“Obviously the girls in the England team are world-class but I think if you are performing now on the domestic level you are likely to put yourself in the frame for an England call-up. So, it did feel quite significant. I was delighted and a bit shocked because it has not really happened before. But now it is a good marker that if you can perform at the domestic level you can really push for an England spot and make the competition harder for the people in and around England.”
“In the women’s game you tend to retire when you are a bit younger but now with this regional stuff, I don’t think age should be a limit; if you put in the performances, it doesn’t matter how old you are,” she concluded.
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This was originally published on – skysports.com