Sunday, November 27, 2022

PCA: Wood is at the wheel

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Part of PCA Futures Week, Former Nottinghamshire player moves into the driving seat.

Life on the open road is a new concept for former Nottinghamshire batter Sam Wood but one that he’s relishing in his new role as a lorry driver.

Looking back 10 years ago, Wood was representing England U19s at the 2012 World Cup in Australia, the highlight of which was scoring 104 against the West Indies.

The left-handed batter went on to play 40 professional games for Nottinghamshire across all formats but then got released at the age of 23.

Wood has spoken to the PCA as part of their Futures Week, a PCA initiative designed to encourage its members to actively think about career transitions.

The campaign is headlined by the centrepiece two-day Futures Conference at St. George’s Park on Wednesday 2 and Thursday 3 November which showcases personal development achievements and opportunities on offer to past and present professional cricketers in England and Wales.

The 29-year-old who has taken a positive option for his future career started by reflecting on his pride in representing England at U19 level.

“Playing for England U19s was really special for me and my family. My mum and dad made  a lot of sacrifices for my cricket when I was growing up, using all their holiday at work to take me to cricket games around the country, so I’m very fortunate to have had that support from my family, which made those few England games even more special.”

After working in a knitting factory with his father-in-law for four years, Wood is now enjoying his new role as a driver for Collins Earthworks and is grateful for the support he’s received from the PCA.

“I’m driving lorries now which is great, Dan Birch who used to play for Derbyshire is my boss and my friend got me in contact with them. The PCA have been incredible, they helped me out with a personal training course that I did. They’ve also helped me pass my class two lorry driving test, that’s opened up so many avenues for me to go and do something that I really wanted to.

“Try and find something that you’re interested in whilst you’re playing because it can be quite different once you finish.”

SAM WOOD

“Obviously the financial support was very helpful as well, I’ve got a young son now so it’s quite hard to take that jump and start something new but having that support from the PCA has made it doable, it really is incredible what support the PCA offers.

“Having that help from everyone including my wife, having such good people around me has been amazing, because I wouldn’t have been able to do it without them,” he said.

The newly trained HGV driver is encouraging others to get involved in a second career whilst they’re still playing by utilising the off-season.

“Try and find something that you’re interested in whilst you’re playing because it can be quite different once you finish. You can waste good time, so just dive into something whilst you’re playing, especially having the support from the PCA.

“I’d definitely recommend doing work experience in the winter because the real world of work is very different to cricket because that is quite unique as a job. It can only benefit people if they get involved with preparing for the future,” Wood said.

Futures Week shines a light on the area of personal development and career transition among PCA members. The two-day Futures Conference forms the centrepiece of the initiative and both are part of the PCA’s Personal Development and Welfare Programme (PDWP). Click here to find out more.

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