Lancashire Cricket Board coach for Bolton, Chris Highton gives his tips on how to play the game better

WITH the cricket season now in full swing despite the weather gods thinking otherwise; I have teamed up with the Bolton News to provide a fortnightly coaching column to assist any aspiring cricketer, young or old to achieve their potential.

As the full-time employed Lancashire Cricket Board coach in Bolton, I have the pleasure of working with a variety of different players.

They range from real grassroots players on a daily basis, including those picking up a bat and ball for the very first time, to working with players that are on the England Player Pathway with my role in the Lancashire Emerging Players Programme, with all shapes and sizes in between.

The aim when working with each of these players is the same, to help maximise their potential.

Obviously the potential of each individual will be different and that is where the coach becomes important.

We need to ensure that all players who play the game firstly enjoy it, have realistic expectations of where they can get to in the game and then provide players with the tools to achieve this.

Over the next few weeks I will be aiming to cover some of the basics of batting, bowling and fielding with some handy drills, tips and ideas that club coaches, parents and players themselves can hopefully use to develop young and old cricketers alike.

We will focus on the basics as these are fundamental to any good performance, with performing those basics under pressure key to developing an excellent performance.