Natasha Farrant still hopeful of an England comeback  

Natasha Farrant. © Kent Cricket

Out-of-contention medium-pacer Natasha Farrant has set her sights on an England comeback but if that doesn’t happen she is happy to be a professional cricketer at the domestic level. Farrant was one of the four Kent cricketers to sign for newly formed regional side South East Stars earlier this month. The three others were Alice Davidson-Richards, Sophia Dunkley and Bryony Smith.

“I definitely have aspirations to get back into the England squad, so hopefully if we do get back out there at the back end of the summer, I can get out there and show what I can do,” Farrant was quoted as saying to CRICKETher. “If it will happen, it will happen; but if not, then I’m happy to be a professional cricketer in the domestic game.”

The 24-year-old Farrant, who was named in England’s squad for the 2018 Women’s T20 World Cup in the West Indies, got unveiled last week in the first tranche of what will eventually be 40 new domestic professional contracts in England. Newly-appointed Regional Director Richard Bedbrook, also admitted that inking the Farrant, currently living in Loughborough, was an easy decision to make:

“Tash is a Kent girl at heart, and when we initially chatted there was a desire for her to come back this way, so it was a no-brainer then that she’d be part of the group,” he said. For the left-armer, the unceremonious losing of England contract at the start of 2019 came as a bitter blow. “When I got let go I wasn’t really expecting it, so for the last year and a half it has been tough,” she said.

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She even wanted to quit the game but her love for the game didn’t let her do that thankfully. “I potentially wanted to (give up), because if you get let go from the England setup, you’re living the best life, you’re contracted, you’re stable, but as soon as you lose it, there’s nothing to fall back on,” she added. “I quickly switched out of that. For me, I just love the game – I would play in the back garden!”

Meanwhile, the biggest positive for Farrant has been her association with a new bowling coach – Scott Boswell, formerly of Lancashire and Leicestershire. “I feel like I’ve got a new sense of my cricket life – I’ve been working at Trent College with Scott, who I cannot praise highly enough. We’ve been going back to the basics, and looking at some points of my action – it’s quite mundane stuff, but I’ve worked really hard, so hopefully we can get some games and I can get out there playing again with the girls, which would be amazing,” said Farrant, who has played 15 internationals for England.

Bedbrook, who was a former head coach of Surrey Stars in Kia Super League, is keen to support the ambitions of his players. “We want to help players make the next step up and realise the ambitions that they might have, which might be to play for England, but equally it might be to be a professional cricketer for as long as they can,” he said.