Lancashire’s own George Balderson captains England U19s
BY Bobbi Hadgraft, Hels Jankovich, Matt Owen and Millie Waller
From Cheadle Hulme to captaining England. At the age of 19, George Balderson has already enjoyed great success in the sport. At the time of writing, Balderson is in South Africa competing in the ICC U19 World Cup. We spoke to him remotely to gain insight into his blossoming career.
Balderson spent his Saturdays watching his father play at a local cricket club, whilst playing cricket with his brothers regularly. This inherited passion saw him play for his age group at Cheadle Hulme, Hyde and Cheshire. He explained how both hard work and luck aided his progression, as well as being in the right places at the right times. He noted his enjoyment of playing: an important factor for young players when remaining resilient during their career journey.
Now, Balderson plays for Lancashire’s second team as well as England under-19s. A huge achievement. However, these accolades have not come without their challenges. George brought up the obstacle of A Levels clashing with travelling to perform for his country, stating that they “are hard enough without spending 2 months abroad”. The balance between sporting progression and education can be easily overlooked, but Balderson reiterated that England’s cricketing successes have inspired him to work hard to be the best he can be, despite a hectic schedule.
The England captain has his eyes set on the ultimate prize of all: The U19 World Cup, where he hopes he will be lifting the trophy come the end of February. With the weight and expectation on the captain’s shoulders, he hopes himself and the team can put in performances the fans will be proud of. When speaking about being named England captain, he said “it’s great fun and something I’m very proud of. I am trying to enjoy every moment.”
Balderson will enjoy some down time with his friends and family after a demanding campaign in South Africa, once the U19 World Cup has come to an end, before starting the cricket season with Lancashire.
We finally spoke to Balderson about some of his favourite memories in his short career so far. The most prominent one was his first win as England captain last summer against India, while competing in the U19 Tri series.