The World Cup winner passing on his knowledge to cricketers across Sussex

When cricket - hopefully - resumes this summer, there will be some youngsters and 50-something club players around who will be able to claim that they prepared by getting one-to-one coaching from a World Cup winner.

Sunday, 28th June 2020, 9:00 am
Mark Robinson has been enjoying working with players other than those at elite level / Picture: Getty

But Mark Robinson, whose four years as coach of the England women’s team included World Cup success in 2017, is back doing what he loves best.

Since restrictions were eased, Robinson has been conducting one-to-one sessions in Arundel - where he has joined the board of the Castle cricket club - and Horsham with whoever wants to hire him.

“It’s been great working for a change with different people other than elite cricketers,” he said.

“When lockdown started all the consultancy work I had was cancelled and initially I enjoyed the break, the chance to take stock. It was the first time since I became a pro at Yorkshire more than 30 years ago that I’ve had a proper, extended break from cricket.

“But as soon as I was able to I wanted to work again. I’ve done sessions with all sorts – an 11-year-old to a 54-year-old. It has been really enjoyable, I’ve always been a pure coach, I love being on the shop floor if you like.

“The break was nice, but it’s been good to be busy again.”

Robinson, 53, has had quite a few offers since he left his role with the England women’s team last August in the wake of their disappointing Ashes defeat.

Friends such as former Sussex chief executive Zac Toumazi and Alan Smith, the former Crystal Palace manager who represented several top cricketers including Matt Prior, counselled him to take his time before deciding on his next move.

And while coaching has been enjoyable, he says he is ready to get back in at an elite level, perhaps in a Head Coach or Director of Cricket role.

“I’ve always been busy, restless even, as a player and a coach so when people I respect who have experience of being in my position tell me to wait and not rush into the first thing I was offered, that was actually quite tough,” he said.

Before lockdown Robinson did some consultancy with Nottinghamshire and Leicestershire and work with England’s deaf team.

Talking to 500 people about leadership “was great because it took me right out of my comfort zone” and he would not rule out going overseas if the right opportunity to work again at elite level.

He is also keen to write a book about his experiences in cricket which included a very successful stint as Sussex coach and, of course, his England career.

For now, though, Robinson is in his element passing on his knowledge to cricketers of all abilities.

“It’s been a while since I did a normal day’s work if you know what I mean – a 9-5 – and not upsetting people when you have to tell them why they are not playing is great!” he said.

“But I‘m itching to get back into coaching at elite level again.”