Sam looks back on his first year

2020 has been a year that we will all remember.

It’s certainly 12 months that will live long in the memory of Sam Young.

Whilst living through the Covid-19 pandemic, Sam has also been experiencing his first year as a professional cricketer.

The 20-year-old signed his first professional contract ahead of the 2020 season and we spoke to him this week to discuss his first 12 months as a pro.

“Given everything that’s happened this year, it’s been a bit different to how I thought it would be,” he explained. “I didn’t play as many games as I would have liked, but I’ve enjoyed every single second of it.

“It’s been a great experience and you are challenged every single day. The senior pros have been brilliant and have helped me every step of the way.”

What has been the main highlight of his brief professional career so far?

“I wouldn’t say that there has been just one standout moment because I’m really enjoying everything to do with the professional environment,” he explained. “Playing for the England Under 19s in the World Cup was a great experience, so that would definitely be up there if I had to pick one.

“Obviously, it would have been nice to play for the Somerset First Team but it’s hard to get into a team that’s doing so well. It was great to see everyone chipping in with big performances. The atmosphere within the camp is great and I think that helped us to win so many games. It’s a really positive environment to be in and I think that success in the form of winning that County Championship is just around the corner.”

Were you inspired by seeing so many young players coming into the team and performing well?

“I’ve had a few conversations with Jason Kerr about this and he’s made it clear that if you are putting in the performances, he won’t be afraid to give you a go in the First Team. I think it’s really good that he is comfortable giving people those opportunities. Next season I’ll obviously be looking to get into that team, and it was great to see the likes of Will Smeed and Lewis Goldsworthy cashing in and doing really when given the opportunity.”

Sam signed his first professional contract at the same time as Lewis Goldsworthy and Kasey Aldridge. Have the three players been driving each other forward?

“The younger players were all living in the flats last year and there’s definitely a bit of healthy competition between us. We just keep pushing each other to get better and I think that’s really healthy. Every single player wants to be in that First Team and keeps pushing themselves and others on to better things.”

How did he cope with the restrictions and guidelines surrounding Covid-19 when it came to training and playing?

“It was very different to what we’re used to,” he said. “But in many ways, it made us push to really make the most of this opportunity that we had.”

Normally at this time of the year many of the First XI squad are jetting off around the world to play cricket throughout the winter. Obviously, this isn’t possible at present, but Sam believes that this could very well be of significant benefit to the Club.

“We’re already seeing the benefit of this time together,” he explained. “Everyone’s really looking forward to next season and we’re all feeling really positive. I feel like I’m getting stronger with every single session that we’re having at the moment and that’s really exciting.”

What does Sam hope to achieve in 2021?

“I’ll be looking to put some performances in for the Second Team so that I can put myself in the frame for the First Team. I love being in this environment and playing cricket. That’s what I love doing and if I can do more of that I’ll be really happy.”

England Image courtesy of Getty Images

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