Graham Onions: Q and A
Our audience of Junior WASPS and players from the Women’s Squad had plenty of questions for our 2013 Presentation Night Guest of Honour! – England and Durham star Graham Onions.
Q: How old were you when you started?
I was a late starter. I played badminton and lots of sports. I was about 12 or 13 when I began. I’d hope people wouldn’t turn up, so I could get a game. Doug Hudson helped me a lot as a coach.
Q: What’s your best memory of your time in junior cricket?
I had the honour of being captain, for the 13s, 15s, 17s. I was a better batsman then, rather than a bowler.
Q: So why did you bowl and not bat?
At the County trials, I was very lucky – the coach Geoff Cook saw something in me, and asked me to come along and bowl at the Durham Firsts. I enjoyed the challenge of developing the bowling, though it was tough at times!
Q: What’s the best way to develop your cricket skills?
Listen, and try hard. Not just to the coaches – your parents know a lot as well. Train hard and be as good as you can.
Q: What do you think about women’s cricket?
It’s brilliant – especially the Twenty20s, we all see each other. It’s really good to see all the publicity, there are some seriously good women cricketers. There’s a lot of money going into the women’s cricket tours now, one of the joys of professional cricket is to travel the world.
Q: What’s it like, playing for England?
It’s amazing. The pinnacle. I’m the 644th person to play for England. It’s everything i dreamed about.
Q: And what’s your favourite England match?
My debut. I’ll never forget it, it was against the West Indies. My first two overs went for 20-odd, I was so nervous, but it worked out well.
Q: What’s been your biggest challenge?
My injury in 2010. I was out for 18 months, had a screw in my back. You realise then how much family and friends mean to you. You can give up, or work hard. It paid off, I got back to where I was, but I learned a lot about myself, physically and mentally.