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Coaching, media and charity work all feature on Somerset legend’s realigned radar.
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After 27 seasons, more than 39,000 runs and three PCA Men’s Player of the Year awards, England and Somerset legend Marcus Trescothick hung up his boots in September 2019.
Since then, ‘Tres’ has been a busy man, advancing his skills in the areas of coaching and media work in particular as he’s adapted to life after cricket.
As part of PCA Futures Week, we spoke to the former opening batsman about his new role, his ambitions, his work with the Professional Cricketers’ Trust and more in a wide-ranging interview…
- Q: How’s your first year of retirement been?
- A: I actually surprised myself with how well the transition from playing went. I’ve got myself a job as Assistant Coach at Somerset with bits and pieces in between. I work at Taunton School in the winter, which I’ve been doing for about six years as I’ve played less and less cricket. I’ve also branched out in other ways – I did some coaching with England during the summer in the bio-secure bubble. I’ve gradually been finding my feet in the coaching world, and that’s where I’m heading more than anything else right now.
- Q: Was there a moment when you realised it was time to look to your next chapter?
- A: I wanted to be able to go out happily. I didn’t want it to get to a stage where I was being hounded out of the door – even though I probably did push it to the limit in the end! I wanted to play for as long as I could because I enjoyed playing so much, but once I had made my mind up it all just fell into place from there. I haven’t looked back since and at no point have I felt like I wanted to play since then.
- Q: Has coaching school kids helped you to prepare for your first year out of the game?
- A: Coaching kids and teenagers is a unique way of doing things and it’s given me a great grounding in terms of thinking about what I have to say and how I have to communicate it. It’s just a good learning curve and experience to try and cut my teeth in things that I’ll be doing later in life.
- Q: Have you done any coaching badges?
- A: A couple of weeks ago I submitted the final part of my Level 4, so I’m waiting to hear whether I have succeeded in that final part. Then I’ll move onto the final assessment, which will hopefully be before Christmas. The PCA helped fund it with a coaching grant which I would recommend all PCA members look into if they want to go down that route.
- Q: What’s your role within the Somerset setup?
- A: I’m tagged as an Assistant Coach, as we all are, but my main remit is batting. I work predominantly in and around the second team to bring through the next generation and the younger guys. Under the circumstances of this year, I’ve ended up working with the first team and the older guys a bit more, but I think next summer will be a bit different.
- Q: How have you adapted to the strange circumstances this year?
- A: A lot of things haven’t happened as I expected them to. There’s been no second team cricket where part of my remit is to be helping the younger players. I’ve been lucky enough to nip off to the bio-secure bubble for a period of time and do some work with the England squad, so I’ve had the best of both worlds and it’s been quite productive for me. Covid-19 has tested us in different ways and we’ve had to do different things in order to overcome it.
- Q: How did your time in the bubble come about, and how was the experience?
- A: I’ve been doing a little bit over the last couple of years. I went to South Africa last winter with England for the IT20 series to cover for Graham Thorpe when he came back for a rest period. That carried on throughout the summer with the two venues (the Ageas Bowl and Emirates Old Trafford) needing completely different coaching staff. That gave me the opportunity and they invited me again, and I ended up doing the Ireland ODI series and the Pakistan IT20s.
- Q: Would you count getting into the England coaching setup as one of your main ambitions?
- A: It would be great if I could continue my growth in that area. I’d love to work my way into the international scene a little bit, but I’d also love to be the Head Coach of a county side along the way. There’s different paths and avenues that I’m hoping my career will take.
- Q: Have you able to continue your media work as well?
- A: This year, it’s taken a bit of a back seat as I’ve been doing more and more coaching. It came around a few years ago when I stopped playing international cricket – I was given the chance to do some punditry with Sky. It’s great fun, brilliant work but it’s very different to doing hands-on coaching and actually being involved with the on-field game. It’s a different experience for me, and has certainly helped me a bit more to understand what I can and can’t do with my career in the future. It’s definitely been part of my learning curve to date.
- Q: Are you veering towards either coaching or media work, or just looking to build skills in both areas?
- A: I like doing both and they’re definitely both great environments to be working in because you’re still very much involved with the game. I would love to carry on doing some punditry but I see myself going down the coaching route predominantly in the next few years. I really like being on the shopfront and doing my coaching work, but that’s not to say I don’t want to continue my media work too.
- Q: You’re still heavily involved with the Professional Cricketers’ Trust. What have you been doing in that area?
- A: I spoke with Dom Bess earlier this year about the mental health battles he has faced. I have guided Dom through the problems he has been experiencing during the last couple of seasons. It was nice for him to get to a point where he felt comfortable talking about it. We’re still hoping to create an environment in cricket where it’s OK to talk about not being quite right. I believe that good work that we’ve done with the Trust and the PCA has allowed Dom to be settled and feel able to talk about it.