Cricket Psychology – Alastair Cook & The Trigger Movements

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So another failure for Alastair Cook in the test series against Pakistan. The debate around the England opener, has centred around Cook’s trigger movements.

A batsman’s trigger movements are designed to help him both get in position, and then react to the ball. But trigger movements are meant to provide stability, like a golfer and their pre-shot routine.

They give a sense of security to the batsman. It means that they do the same thing, each time to each ball. But they are not essential.

If Alastair Cook is having to think about, or remember his trigger movements when he is at the crease, then they defeat their purpose. Maybe better for him to forget about trigger movements altogether.

Instead aim to bat with a clear head. Concentrating solely on the ball, until it hits his bat. And trusting himself to naturally get into the right position. If his natural skills are not good enough to score runs, then so be it.

But right now, with trigger movements to remember, Alastair Cook is tying himself in knots. He is losing his cricketing instinct, in favour of a ‘system’.

Either that, or go back to county cricket where he can make his trigger movements permanent away from the spotlight. But, currently he is like a golfer trying to tinker with his swing, in the middle of a Major. There is just too much pressure on each shot, to easily integrate a new habit.

Alastair Cook can get through this run-scoring crisis. But he has to be mentally tough, and decide exactly how he wants to bat. Take no more advice. And aim to keep things as simple as possible.