Pathway Selection Framework

This is to provide parents and club coaches a clearer understanding of the basis that selections are made for the Bucks Cricket Pathway. 

Selections will always be subjective. However, we ensure a robust consideration of factors and justification for the selections made. 

Each year we publish our Player Pathway Selection Data. View 2024 data here.

The factors that county coaches are asked to consider are: 

  • Skill/technical fundamentals: see what they are looking for via the Our Approach doc here 

  • Strength of their Main Skill (bat/bowl/wicket-keeping) 

  • Quality of their Fielding 

  • Athleticism 

  • Love of the game  

  • Desire to improve 

  • Commitment to the Bucks programmes and effort at sessions 

  • Independence - can make decisions/evaluate own performance without looking to parents for guidance 

  • Resilience - push themselves out of comfort zone/take risks, make & learn from mistakes 

  • Empathy – good teammates who encourage & elevate those around them. 

  • Current performance vs. Perceived future potential 

  • Adult League performance – more relevant for U15+ where this will be a big consideration, but encourage all U12+ players to be playing adult league cricket to aid learning/development 

  • Club – players from smaller clubs may have had less previous access to coaches/matchplay/facilities and therefore may have more as yet unseen talent to come out 

  • Schools - players at state schools (particularly non-selective) may have had less previous access to coaches/matchplay/facilities and therefore may have more as yet unseen talent to come out 

  • Physical Maturation and Birth Quarter – Sep-Nov early borns in the school year may have a physical advantage over Jun-Aug later borns 

  • Knowledge from previous year’s county squad coaches  

  • Perception on what is best for the child’s development (balance of challenge/success)  

The weighting that is placed on each of these factors depends on both the coaches of that age group and the age and stage of the players they are coaching. If the coaches have considered all these elements, then we know the players have been subject to a fair and robust process. Not everyone may agree with the selections made, but that is the nature of player identification and selection. 

We do not consider the opinions of private coaches, for all the obvious reasons why this would not be appropriate despite their credentials. 

Players develop at different rates. The best players at younger ages may continue to be so at the top end of the pathway, but they are equally as likely to have been overtaken by others or have dropped out of the game altogether. We also have many examples of players missing out on selection for one year, then bouncing back and thriving in subsequent years. This demonstration of resilience often holds them in great stead for years to come. 

Parents should feel comfortable asking for feedback on selections and their child’s development at any point. However, please understand that with 276 boys and 101 girls in the pathway making this systematic is currently a challenge. While selections will always be made in comparison to other players (e.g. how many spinners are needed in a squad),we ask parents to refrain from any comparison of their child to others. Not only will a parent not know the weighting of the factors above that a coach has selected another child on, but such comparison creates an unhealthy environment. We encourage players to focus on their own continual learning and development and feedback will be provided to aid this.