"Being in The Zone"
In an extraordinary days cricket on Friday 3rd January 2003 at the S.C.G. Australian Captain Steve Waugh achieved a remarkable feat. He achieved -
This was a memorable sporting achievement. It was also a remarkable sporting performance. In commenting on his achievements at his press conference Steve Waugh said -
STEVE WAUGH: " as a sports person, they talk about 'being in the zone', it only happens a couple of times in a career You've always got to aim for the perfect innings, you never know when it's going to happen or it may never happen - but it's something I always strive for and today was pretty close to as good as I can play."
It is evident from this that being "in the zone" is obviously not what makes for a good performance. According to Steve this only happens once or twice in a career. Here is a batsman who has achieved a total of 10,000 runs. To achieve that there must have been many many very good performances in which he wasn't in "the zone". Being "in the zone" may create a very special performance but other elements create good performances. In fact Steve doesn't know when "it" might happen, so there is no use striving for it. What Steve Waugh did on the day was to come to the crease and apply himself to the task at hand. As he went along he discovered he was "in the zone".
It reminds one of Michael Caine's quote from the actor's point of view
always be there because I'm a skilled professional actor.
It is being the skilled professional that allows sports people and acting people to 'be there' and do the job. Skill is something that can be acquired, practised, assessed and expanded. 'Talent' and 'being in the zone' are elements which are in the lap of the gods.
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