Paul Farnham, thoughts

by Paul Farnham




– What do you need to do to achieve your vision?Once your vision is clear it is important to realise where you are at the moment relative to what you want to achieve. Floyd asked the audience to think of a vision they have and then assess where they are on a scale of 1-10. A start point brings into focus what you need to do to achieve your vision and the price you will have to pay for achieving your vision.“We were in a pretty bad state to be honest with you (when he and Flower teamed up) and it says a huge amount for what Andy Flower has done,”– Andrew Strauss



– The things we stand by!We should all have a personal ethos. Floyd said that his is the ‘pursuit of excellence, trust, humour and classlessness’. Our ethos should be clinical– things that you can state about yourself (or your team) that are unambiguous.

‘’I wanted an ethos of constant improvement, not maintenance, because there could be a tendency for players to be motivated by holding on to their central contracts.” – Andy Flower




– Learning by making mistakes!To reach our vision we must constantly put ourselves in the ‘Pressure Zone’ and learn by making mistakes and adapting the next time we are put under pressure. Floyd asked for volunteers to come up from the audience to answer ‘maths’ questions – no one put their hand up! It is easy to be safe/conservative (‘please don’t pick me’) and most people have a fear of failure. However, the more you put yourself under pressure the more you will learn.

“I thought there was huge scope in addressing our fielding skills and intensity. We can’t have the situation where we can’t run singles to mid-on and mid-off, but the opposition can.’’ – Andy Flower




– Train tough – filling the Subconscious! Under pressure we revert back to things that we have learnt/done in the past, stored in our sub-conscious (a giant computer database with files of all our previous experiences). Our training must replicate the pressure of match situations as close as possible (or more) so that when under pressure in a match we will replicate pefect practice and do the basics  exceptionally well. It is when you acquire the ‘I’ve been here before’ feeling. Never cut corners with your drills or training.ELIMINATING DISTRACTIONS



– Finding the Edge!Mental Toughness is a skill that can be taught and practiced. Floyd uses a progressive colour system to give him ‘the edge’ when in the Pressure

Zone. By mentally moving through the different colour zones he eliminates distractions;

WHITE – Lots to think about, mind is full (arriving at the ground)

GREEN – Start to take control of your thinking/ focus attention (warm-up/team meeting)

AMBER – The focus narrows, thinking of one thing only (going out to bat)

RED – ‘Just do it’, do not think (the subconscious takes over), trust yourself, relax, live in the now (as the bowler runs in)




– Characteristics of successful people!Floyd says that he has few natural talents but has achieved everything by having a clear vision of what he wants to achieve so that his body and mind can work together in one direction – he knows where he is going and he will get there. Other common characteristics;

SELFISH – Work Hard , be prepared to give things up if necessary.

SELFLESS – Give to your team ALWAYS

STEAL – Study successful people and ‘steal’ their ideas

“He’s rock-solid for us as a leader. He is our front man and I think the guys are enjoying him as a leader. I think he’s strong, he’s honest, he’s fair,

he’s ambitious and I think he’s got a very clear vision of what he wants from the England team,” – Andy Flower on Andrew Strauss




– Characteristics of successful teams!Floyd talked about his recent time with the Leander Rowing Club – which he described as a bastion of success with walls filled with trophies. The level of expectation is high and everyone is encouraged to reach the highest standards possible through training and developing. Other characteristics of successful teams;

INCLUSION – Everyone must have a role within the team. People that are marginalised tend to end up being disruptive.

CONTROL – Players should feel empowered, so that they belong to the team

OPENNESS – Everyone must trust each other.

“It’s encouraging to me to hear guys in the team speak about this is a fantastic team and once you start getting that feeling you become greater than the sum of your parts,” – Andrew Strauss




– An outstanding coach!Floyd has worked with Andy Flower and describes his coaching as ‘outstanding’. England players have been required to ‘step-up’ to a new level and whinging is not tolerated. Fitness and fielding standards are un-negotiable. At Under 18 level all players must attain a ‘bleep test’ score of 12 or they are axed from the squad – this is the benchmark, anything less and they fail. The bar has been raised!”The way he communicates with the players and drives us, he’s trying to take us to a different place to where we’ve been before and it’s fantastic tobe able to work with him. Hopefully, we’ve got a long way to go in that respect as well,” Andrew Strauss on Andy Flower

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