England captain: The job nobody can prepare for - Others - More Sports - The Independent

England captain: The job nobody can prepare for

In the second part of our interview with Charlotte Edwards, Casey Stoney and Katy McLean, the skippers tell Robin Scott-Elliot about the pride responsibility and difficulty of leading the country

This is the first time you have sat down together – all the captains of the big three – and talked leadership. What sort of a captain are each of you, the "once more unto the breach" type?

Katy McLean Yes I'm probably like that, a bit of a shouter.

Casey Stoney Me too.

Charlotte Edwards I'm pretty hard. I don't shout but they know who is in charge.

CS When people need a kick up the backside you give it to them, especially in training where you want to create a competitive environment. But there is no point in me saying you need to do this and not doing it myself – you have to lead by example. I'm not afraid not to be liked either if that's what's necessary.

It must change your relationship with other players, people who are your friends?

CE You don't realise they [the other players] are looking at every single move you make. I've had to drop mates sometimes. It can be hard but they know I'm doing the best for the team. You have to be thick-skinned.

KM It can be quite lonely sometimes. It's a big step that nobody prepares you for.

CS I was lucky as I was vice-captain for a while but it's different when you make that step up, although I don't have half the responsibility that you do Charlotte.

CE When you are away for five or six weeks, it's a long time to keep everyone happy. That's probably the hardest part, making sure that they all get on. I feel like a social worker at times.

CS Sometimes you just want to go in your room and shut the door…

CE Then you get a knock on the door and you're like 'oh no, what's this about'. But they need to feel they can approach me. And then you have got to perform – I have to open the batting and I've got to score runs.

You can separate the responsibilities of captain from your responsibilities as a player?

CE Yes. I'm there to do a job – to score runs and if I do we'll be successful. In cricket you can make more of an impact individually. You're an individual in a team sport.

CS That's massive, performing well. If you keep performing well, hopefully you get others to strive to match your performance. If you are not performing then that makes it more difficult. You're not always confident. Sometimes you have to put a front on.

CE I agree. I have gone through times when I have not scored runs for England. You have got to be the same person [with the your team-mates] you were when you got a hundred. Consistency of behaviour [as a captain] is important.

Has the role changed you, or are you natural leaders?

CE I think I am quite natural. I've always wanted to do it.

CS I've been a captain at every club I've been at since I was 20 so there has always been something in me. I didn't realise how much pressure came with [captaining England] – but it's pressure I enjoy.

KM I'm quite outspoken and if there's something I don't agree with I will end up saying it. There have been times when I felt I want to be in the middle of my friends but you think I can't right now because I am captain. That's always there.

CE You have to be self-aware and aware of others. But be you. Don't try and be someone you are not.

So what does it feel like to lead out your country?

KM It was my ultimate dream. I've always wanted to captain my country, as ridiculous as that might sound. The only thing that would be better – the pinnacle – would be to lift a World Cup as England captain.

CE You feel 10 foot tall. When I walk through the Long Room at Lord's [she puffs up her cheeks and exhales slowly]. There are some feelings I never thought you would experience –I've been fortunate enough to lift the World Cup.

Describe that?

CE Relief! I had played for so long – it was my fourth World Cup. You know what it makes you feel? It makes you want to do it again.

CS You do stand taller. I could burst with pride when we walk out the tunnel, especially when we were at Wembley [against Brazil in the Olympics].

CE I well up. When the national anthem comes on I'm there going: 'God, don't cry'!

CS I end up clenching my jaw. I walked out at Wembley going: 'job to do, don't get emotional.' You think if I start singing I will cry and that's no good! You could burst with pride, honestly. It's the best feeling – for all the crap you might get, the down moments, the stress, it's all worth it when you walk out on that pitch.

News
John Travolta is a qualified airline captain and employed the pilot with his company, Alto
people'That was the lowest I’d ever felt'
Life and Style
healthIt isn’t greasy. It doesn’t smell. And moreover, it costs nothing
News
peopleThe report and photo dedicated to the actress’s decolletage has, unsurprisingly, provoked anger
Property
Home body: Badger stays safe indoors
property
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
The programme sees four specialists creating what they believe are three perfect couples, based on scientific matchmaking. The couples will not meet until they walk down the aisle together
tvUK wedding show jilted
Arts and Entertainment
US pop diva Jennifer Lopez sang “Happy Birthday” to Gurbanguly Berdimuhamedow, president of Turkmenistan
musicCorporate gigs become key source of musicians' income
Arts and Entertainment
You've been framed: Henri Matisse's colourful cut-outs at Tate Modern
artWhat makes a smash-hit art show
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
filmsDaniel Craig believed to be donning skis as 007 for first time
Sport
Mikel Arteta pictured during Borussia Dortmund vs Arsenal
champions league
Voices
Yes supporters gather outside the Usher Hall, which is hosting a Night for Scotland in Edinburgh
voicesBen Judah: Is there a third option for England and Scotland that keeps everyone happy?
Arts and Entertainment
Pulp-fiction lover: Jarvis Cocker
booksJarvis Cocker on Richard Brautigan
Arts and Entertainment
Robin Thicke and Pharell Williams in the video of the song, which has been accused of justifying rape
music...and he had 'almost no part' in writing it
Caption competition
Caption competition
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Senior QA Engineer - Agile, SCRUM

£35000 - £50000 per annum + benefits: Ashdown Group: Senior QA Engineer (Agil...

Marketing Executive - West Midlands - £28,000

£26000 - £28000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Digital Marketing Executive (SEO, PP...

Retail Business Analyst

£40000 - £50000 Per Annum: Clearwater People Solutions Ltd: Our retail client ...

Senior C++ Developer

£400 - £450 Per Annum possibly more for the right candidate: Clearwater People...

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week