Domestic and international cricketers have taken time out of their hectic schedules to prioritise their future off the field as part of the PCA’s Futures Week.
Twelve professional teams were represented at the PCA’s flagship Futures Conference, including six current and former England players such as James Bracey, Katherine Brunt and 2022 cinch PCA Women’s Player of the Year Nat Sciver. The 19 members in attendance took part in 13 sessions throughout the conference which saw numerous activities, exercises and discussions designed to give them clarity on their future career options.
The two-day event at the England national football team training centre at St. George’s Park took place on Wednesday 2 and Thursday 3 November as players were able to gain expertise from guest speakers and discuss career transition with one another in the inspiring surroundings.
Representatives from Lodders Solicitors, who are the lead sponsors of the Futures Awards, also presented to the group on how best to pursue a career in law and their motivation for wanting to support cricketers.
For the second year in succession, the PCA Futures Awards will take place at Lodders’ head offices in Cheltenham, rewarding PCA members who have taken steps for their personal development. You can find more information here.
Other speakers at the Futures Conference included former Lancashire and Leicestershire bowler Gavin Griffiths who has recently joined PCA’s Finance Wellbeing Partner, Brooks Macdonald. The session led on cash flow management and financial strategies to support players and their futures.
The final workshop of the event saw a networking carousel where a host of PCA partners including New Balance, All Sport Insurance and Pike + Bambridge with the players using skills built across the event to speak to experts across different sectors to obtain tangible benefits from building relations.
The average age of players leaving the professional game remains at 26 with an average of 43 players leaving the game every single year. The Association is therefore proud to reaffirm its commitment to supporting players in this area which remains a cornerstone of its industry-leading Personal Development and Welfare Programme (PDWP).
The Futures Conference was the headline event of Futures Week 2022, an initiative designed for all PCA members, from those at the outset of their career to those who have retired from the professional game.
Running from Monday 31 October – Sunday 6 November, Futures Week encourages cricketers to consider their second careers and start planning ahead as they look towards the future.
England and Northern Diamonds bowler, Katherine Brunt, said: “I think the Futures Conference isn’t just for people like me that are transitioning into retirement but for players 10 years younger than me. It’s a great place to be because this will make you feel safe and secure throughout your career because it makes what comes after cricket less daunting.
“I’ve taken in lots from the sessions and it’s a great chance to come and network too. It’s a great day all round and really enjoyable.
“I might be one of the fewer people who decided to look into this stage of my life about 10 years ago when I had a major injury. It made me look at my life and how dependent I was on cricket and what was happening outside of that was very little, so it forced me to work on the next stage of my life. So now I’m in a comfortable stage of my life to look at retirement. The earlier you can plan for the future, the easier it will be to get to where you want to.”
Former Lancashire seamer, Liam Hurt, said: “I’ve not got a county at the moment so it’s a good opportunity to explore my options which I think will really help me out for the future.
“I’m a fully qualified plumber so I’d be interested in going into anything related to property. I’d also look at learning skills at how to go into investments. I did an apprenticeship straight after school in plumbing, and I’ve carried on with it during the winters.
“I’ve taken some good information that I can use when I’m pricing up jobs. The PDMs (Personal Development Managers) that I’ve had have been great and it’s the first time I’ve come to one of these events and it’s been helpful to take away such good information, and it gives me a better understanding of where to go next.”
PCA Lead Personal Development Manager, Charlie Mulraine, said: “The PCA Futures Conference is now one of our key events in the calendar and it was inspiring to see so many engaged members joining us at St. George’s Park.
“The centrepiece of PCA Futures Week, the two-day event illustrated the breadth of careers that both current and former professional cricketers can consider once their playing days are over. Importantly, this week is about educating our current players that life beyond the field can be as rewarding and fulfilling as their playing days and it is never too early to have interests away from cricket to help prepare yourself for the career pivot that will take place at some stage.
“I hope that PCA members will be inspired and begin to take steps for their own futures and I would like to thank all of the speakers, including a number of PCA members and commercial partners, for coming to the conference to share their expertise with the group.”
PCA Futures Conference 2022 attendees: Katherine Brunt, Kate Cross, Nat Sciver (all England), Ami Campbell, Abigail Freeborn (both Central Sparks), Billy Godleman, Mattie McKiernan, George Scrimshaw (all Derbyshire), James Bracey, David Payne (both Gloucestershire), Marcus O’Riordan (Kent), Tom Bailey (Lancashire), Sarah Bryce, Lucy Higham (both Lightning), Georgia Elwiss (Southern Vipers), Matt Dunn (Surrey), Michael Burgess (Warwickshire), Liam Hurt (former Lancashire), Alex Wakely (former Northamptonshire).
Futures Week shines a light on the area of personal development and career transition among PCA members. The two-day Futures Conference forms the centrepiece of the initiative and both are part of the PCA’s Personal Development and Welfare Programme (PDWP). Click here to find out more.