Yuvresh is one of the country’s promising young cricketers, playing for the Hertfordshire County team at just 14 years old. One of a handful of British-Asians playing on the team, the exceptional, enthusiastic talent rose to County level after leading his Club team, Watford, to victory as the Captain of the U9s: “We realised very early on that Yuvresh was a natural,” Yuvresh’s proud father – and very first coach - told us: “he had excellent hand-eye co-ordination, and was particularly adept at spinning the ball. I was actively involved in his training to begin with, and we sent him off to cricketing summer camps too. From there it all took off and has been rapidly growing since.” Yuvresh himself told us that he’s “enjoyed honing batting skills, along with a clear strength in bowling, and generally loves all aspects of the multidimensional game.”
The young sportsman’s dawning destiny in what his father aptly described as ‘the gentlemen’s game’, was also clear in the fact he learns from the cricketing approaches of individual players, such as Joe Root, Virat Kohli and AB De Villers whose batting Yuvresh particularly admires: “It’s interesting to watch the way Root varies his batting from one test match to the next. I really enjoy watching and studying the way players develop and their highlight moments rather than focussing on any one team – I consider how I can adapt the lessons and do better next time.” Indeed a studied, measured eye is what really distinguishes the sport, and a professional enthusiast, signalling the fact that the young dedicatee is likely progress to the next level of the game. “I do support the English cricket team,” Yuvresh added, “but I also have a special place in my heart for India. It’s where I was born, and they do have world-renowned players.” Recently dubbed the highest wicket-taker for the county in 2016 for Under 13's, we are sure Yuvresh will run far.
(Talking to mum, Parul): Your son is very young - Tell us a bit, as only a mum can, about your son’s cricketing life so far – how did he get into it; how has he grown?
Very young – we were playing in the garden and he was as young as 5 years old. Seeing the cricketing streak in him, we enrolled him in summer training camps several years in a row.Together with the careful, guiding hand of his father and some excellent playing experience, with some expert training from his coaches, he has come to be the well-rounded player he is today. He excels at bowling, batting, catching and fielding. He has always reciprocated the energy and puts in the hard work, developing across various games and from the tips he picks up.
Yuvresh, what have been some of your proudest moments?
When I captained the U9s team and we took home the county trophy. There was a catch taken on the last over which turned the game around, and I think it demonstrated my managing skills very well. Being the 2nd highest wicket-taker in Hertfordshire last year was also a highlight.
Is it good to have had the support of your dad and grow your talent alongside him?
Yes, it’s interesting listening to his analysis of the games when he plays at Club level and listening to him when he comes back from sessions is very rewarding. It’s good to know I have his emotional support going forward.
Do you have a favourite shot?
My batting has been good to develop; I have had progressive development in my batting, owing to my wonderful coaches. I also experiment a lot with my shots, but I love to play cover drives and sweep shots. It’s good to just relax and have fun with them.
What really grabs you about the sport?
It’s the feeling of wanting to do well. I try to stay relaxed before a game and just be in the moment and focus.
I also enjoy working as a team: cricket really is a team effort. We talk amongst the members and exchange ideas on our collective weaknesses and strengths; think carefully about what we can improve on.
(Talking to life coach dad, Vikrant): What, in your opinion makes cricket a superior sport to others?
As Yuvresh has hinted at, cricket is a calm and collected game. It’s as much about concentration, patience and strategy as it is physical prowess. There’s not a lot of shouting and screaming as in say, football. Often cricket matches are steady, whole day games which keep you engaged. And of course, we believe, cricket is a sport that runs in every Indian’s blood!
What do you feel about the representation of Asian players in British international teams? Is it equable?
In the current England team, there are some great Asian players, such as Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali. In Yuvresh’s squad there are a few British-Asian players too, and it’s a strong multicultural platform. The Clubs for children are generally quite mixed: you have players from Asian, Jewish and all sorts of cultural backgrounds. The parents unite for a common cause. Hopefully that journey will continue, especially with the increased encouragement from parents for their children to play serious sport.
Finally, Yuvresh, what is your goal in the future with the sport?
To qualify for major county teams, which is a decision taken after all the county coaches deliberate and is quite an honour. Hopefully then the hope is to go on and play for England!