We were thrilled to speak to Hannah T-A (Atkinson), who is heading to Australia to train and play cricket, with the Sunshine Coast Grammar School.
When did you start playing Cricket?
I started from a young age; my dad played Semi Professional Cricket, and it just went from there. My brother got into it because our local cricket club is five minutes up the road. My dad was a big cricketer, and my mom is Australian, and it’s a massive thing over there. I always felt like it was part of me; it was something I’ve always loved.
So you said your dad played Semi Professional; when did he start and finish playing professional Cricket?
He played when he finished his version of A levels, from 18 until around 20 to mid 30’s. He didn’t go to university first; instead, he played Cricket [when he finished school at 18] because it was you do one or the other. Then, he went to university, and he is now a successful businessman.
Can you tell us a bit about what will happen in this Australian Cricket experience?
I’m going over there to play for their County Side for four weeks; it will be similar to winter training, a preseason experience, developing my skills. It’s not necessarily about the outcome. It’s more about what I learn from being there. The environment and the standard of Cricket in Australia are at a high level.
What would you say Mill Hill School has done to help you develop your skills in cricketing?
It’s the support from nutrition and with help from Mr Patel, Head of Cricket, and one-to-one [sessions], and the extra training sessions I get on top of all my Cricket outside of school hours.
Do you have any advice for younger pupils?
Have no fear. Take wherever opportunities come your way, and don’t worry about the outcome because it’s so far away; live in the moment. Take what you can now, and try and better yourself now.
What part of Cricket is your favourite?
Definitely, batting is my favourite because that’s my strength. Also, the environment and the friends I’ve made through Cricket, I know I’m going to have them for the rest of my life. We all share [Cricket] in common; we all bond over it. They’re honestly some of the nicest, funniest people I’ve ever met.
We wish you all the best in Australia!