Olivia Rae, current Middlesex player and former Scotland international, has become one of the first women ever to launch her own cricket coaching business – Rae Cricket Coaching.
The launch took place on Friday at North London Cricket Club, where Rae will be leading the girls programme, as well as working as part of the coaching team that coaches junior boys and senior men.
Rae Cricket Coaching offers coaching sessions for individuals, small groups and schools throughout London. Rae herself is Level 3 qualified and a former coach of the Scotland Under-17s, as well as the current Berkshire U17 county girls head coach and Middlesex county U11 girls coach.
“Rae Cricket Coaching is bringing all my coaching experience together,” Rae told CRICKETher at the launch. “I’m using the tagline Refine, Adapt, Excel, which is something that I’ve developed over the 12 years I’ve been coaching.”
“We look at refining what people already have, because everybody’s got something. It’s about being able to adapt to different situations, whether that’s tactically, technically or mentally. And we believe that will make you excel at what you do.”
“I believe mental preparation is just as important as physical preparation, so that’s a really big part of what we’re doing – integrating basic mental skills into sessions. We use player diaries for instance for players to reflect, and that’s something they will get used to doing throughout the sessions.”
In a still male-dominated profession, it is great to see a female coach like Rae seeking to make use of her long experience playing and coaching in both women’s and men’s cricket.
“Our ethos at Rae Cricket Coaching is about creating an all-round cricketer,” Rae says. “We can benefit boys, girls, men and women in that respect.”
“Sometimes as a female coach, you can feel like you’re coaching for all women. Because if you mess up they’ll say ‘women can’t coach’. But I’d like to take it away from gender – hopefully the boys can look at me as someone who’s played a high level of cricket, someone who sometimes turns out and plays men’s cricket as well, and who knows what I’m talking about.
“I hope everyone I coach will look at me for my experience – it’s not that I’m a female coach, it’s that I’m a good coach.”
Rae is also part of Middlesex’s squad for the forthcoming season and will continue to play, alongside her work with Rae Cricket Coaching. We look forward to seeing her on the county circuit, and wish her every success with this latest venture.