How to deal with Nerves and Pressure

Below are some simple ideas to help deal with your nerves when playing cricket.

It’s good to have some nerves before playing – but they need to be controlled.
Nervous feelings are caused by adrenalin going through your body. This is a good thing as it heightens your awareness, focus and levels of concentration if you use it properly. Use the tips below to harness the power of nerves.

People you play against are just as nervous as you whether they are batters, bowlers or fielders.

In nets be hard on yourself - get used to pressure, don’t slog and get out 5 times then find in your next match you need to make 20 not out to win the game with the last batter in. Prepare how you’re going to play

If waiting to bat don’t play your innings before you go out there.

Watch the game but not too closely. Just because those in are playing and missing or getting out doesn’t mean you will.

Try to sit behind when quicks are on they seem a lot faster sideways on.

Bowlers prepare your run up before the game starts, find out which end you are likely to bowl from or mark at both ends. You are then in control when you come on to bowl.

Your nerves will be increased by drinking tea, coffee, coke/pepsi – they all contain caffeine and will increase your heart rate.

Remember to breathe deeply, nerves can be reduced by relaxed breathing when feeling under pressure.

Your Captain says to you “You’ve got to win this game for us” – a potentially daunting task awaits and nerves might get to you. Instead of focusing on winning the game (the outcome), focus on what you need to do, for instance scoring 30 not out (the process).

Nerves are greatest at the start of your contribution so keep it simple. If a batter, look for a single as your 1st objective. If a bowler, look to bowl a decent length on off stump rather than an inswinging Yorker 1st ball

If you arrive feeling nervous go for run or warm up. You’ll feel physically more ready and mentally sharper

Visualise succeeding. If necessary think of your best performances, even on a particular ground or against a particular team. Remove any negative thoughts.

Read the notes on Mental Preparation to add some depth to Dealing with Nerves.


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