In an exclusive interview with Headstrong: An Innings With, Sam Curran goes into great detail about the mental side of the game, including the challenges that have come with living and competing in bio-secure bubbles during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The youngest Curran brother also gives an insight into his upbringing, growing up alongside two older brothers who also went on to to play the game professionally. Curran, who at 22 has already played 42 games for England in international cricket, also reveals what it has been like to play against his oldest brother Tom in the Indian Premier League.
Speaking at the beginning of England’s white-ball tour of South Africa in late 2020, Curran brought up a game the brothers played against each other in that year’s IPL with Tom representing Rajasthan Royals and Sam donning Chennai Super Kings’ yellow.
“We grew up so competitive, always batting, bowling, fielding, doing everything,” said Curran. “I’ve actually played against Tom in the IPL this year . On such a big stage it’s pretty funny. I was running into bowl and I couldn’t stop laughing. You’ve got to try and be serious but sometimes you’ve got to realise that it’s a bit of fun and whatever happens happens.
“He nicked one for four which I wasn’t happy about and had a word with him after the game.”
In the 2021 tournament, the brothers faced each other once more with Tom’s Delhi Capitals side beating CSK by seven wickets in Mumbai. While Tom’s side emerged victorious, Sam won the battle between the two brothers, hitting Tom for 16 runs off three deliveries late in the CSK innings.
Elsewhere in the interview, Curran also talked about the impact of stump microphones on the prevalence of on-field sledging. Curran said: “We all know now when we’re playing that when you walk past the stumps there’s a microphone there. I think guys just need to be a little bit more subtle in the way they approach their verbal ways but in the moment it’s very difficult if you’re in a battle and you want to say something so you gotta say it.
“You’ve just got to keep it as clean and clear as possible. You don’t want to say the wrong thing and be caught in the media game where they can spin it and then next thing you know you’re a ‘bad guy.’ There’s still a bit of sledging but I think that’s a healthy thing.”
You can listen to the full interview with Curran on the Headstrong podcast, available to listen to on all the usual podcast hosting platforms. Headstrong: An Innings With supports the Ruth Strauss Foundation and is exclusively previewed by Wisden.com.