Dreams of a career playing cricket are a step closer for Emma Lamb who has been awarded an England Rookie Contract, following her graduation last year from Edge Hill University.
The 22-year-old all-rounder, who plays domestically for Lancashire, has impressed for her county for a number of years, playing a pivotal role in Lancashire’s double silverware success in 2017, picking up 13 wickets and scoring 333 runs.
Having spent recent years balancing both a university degree and professional cricket, this could now well be the start of a long international career.
“I am extremely grateful to be awarded a rookie contract,” said Emma. “But the hard work doesn’t stop here.
“I don’t think you can underestimate how difficult it can be to balance university studies with training. It’s quite hard to focus on just the cricket.
“After completing my Sports and Exercise Science degree at Edge Hill University, I’ve earned my contract so cricket’s now my main focus where it wasn’t before.”
Although women’s Rookie Contracts are by themselves not a full-time living wage, they allow a player who might otherwise have had to go out and look for a regular job to continue within the system; and Emma will also be able to supplement her England contract with her earnings from playing for the Werther’s Manchester Originals in The Hundred (if goes ahead in August).
Despite being in lockdown, Emma has been creative with her home workouts. Offering advice to other sports people out there, Emma said:
“I find it helpful writing down fitness goals I want to achieve every week and writing down a plan of my exercise. A tip I find helpful is splitting the day up with exercise and activities. For example doing a running session in the morning, then resting and doing a small agility fielding session in the afternoon.
“This is the only time as a cricketer I’ve been able to fully focus on fitness, so I am trying to improve on the areas I need to develop. I’m lucky that I have a back garden, so I am able to top up and do some small fielding drills as well as throws.”
A right-handed opening batter, Emma has come-up through the Lancashire age-group system. After averaging over 100 at U17 level, she made her senior debut in the Women’s County Championship in 2012 against Warwickshire and then made her first century the following year against Durham. She also made 30 appearances for Lancashire Thunder, scoring 329 runs at a Strike Rate of 99, and taking 21 wickets with a best of 4-17.
While studying at Edge Hill, Emma was awarded sports scholarship to help ease the financial burden of being a student and access the training Emma needed to progress. To find out more about scholarships visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/scholarships/prospective-students/sports/
To find out more about studying at Edge Hill for a Sport and Exercise Science degree, visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/courses/sport-and-exercise-science/