S. Claire Taylor – Cricket
Samantha Claire Taylor MBE is a former English cricketer and retired member of the England women’s team. Her honours include two World Cups in 2009, including player of the year.
What made you want to become an athlete?
There were three main reasons for me wanting to become an athlete and for keeping me at the top of my game, which were:
1. Enjoyment of the sport
2. Overall performance including excitement and preparation
3. Zone – being in the zone and maintaining that level for the entire game
What has been your proudest moment to date?
Winning player of the tournament in two consecutive World Cup competitions in 2009, as well as hitting winning runs at Lords in T20 final.
What does your typical day involve?
At my peak I would train 8-10 times a week. This would be made up of training sessions for 6 days out of 7, with 2-3 cricket sessions and 7-8 physical sessions.
Who or what inspires you to get up in a morning?
I am a very organised person! I know what I have committed to that day and I just get on with it.
What do your friends and family think about what you do?
They are very happy for me and proud of what I managed to achieve throughout my sporting career.
How did you get to where you are today?
At school I completed A-levels in maths, further maths and physics. I then went onto do a maths degree at Queen’s College Oxford.
As part of my working life I have worked as a systems analyst and systems manager, and now I work as a management consultant in higher education.
Looking back, is there anything you would change/do differently if you could?
No! It has all been part of the rich tapestry of life!
What advice would you give to someone thinking of following in your path?
Make sure you carry on with education as it is extremely important and you need it to fall back on after you retire from the game.
How do you use sports science to support your training/performance?
There are various areas of sports science that helped me to achieve in cricket including game planning used for risk analysis; biomechanics to find the most efficient shot positions; nutrition to fuel my performance; and sports medicine – especially using cortisone injections to treat serious injuries.
Which scientists are involved in cricket, helping you to maximise your performance?
Physiotherapists, doctors, physiologists, strength and conditioning coaches, and performance analysts.
What kind of hobbies do you do to relax?
I play violin in an orchestra. I also like to cook, read and listen to music. I make a point of watching no TV!
Have there been any embarrassing moments?
I have in the past fallen asleep and been loudly snoring during squad relaxation sessions!