Patience is a key attribute in cricket. A certain Yorkshire legend who turned 80 last week will tell you that. At the moment, White Rose and Northern Diamonds star Hollie Armitage is having to show plenty of it in order to just get out onto the field.
Batting all-rounder Armitage has flown to Australia for a winter of club cricket and coaching in Tasmania.
But, with the complications surrounding Coronavirus, she is currently having to go through a spell in quarantine before getting started.
Just over halfway through a two-week isolation period in Sydney, where she landed on a flight from the UK, she is likely to have to do another two weeks once she flies to Hobart at the weekend as not all state borders are open.
It is fair to say that patience is being tested!
“I’ve got a jigsaw on the go, but I’ve only done the edges so far,” she laughed. “And it’s been like that since day two, so I don’t think I’ll be completing that any time soon.
“Otherwise, it’s lot of Netflix and the IPL. I’m also doing a Level Two Fitness Instructor course at the moment and am just cracking on with that as much as I possibly can.
“I’ve brought some resistance bands to keep my fitness ticking over. Naturally, it’s been a lighter two weeks fitness wise, but I’m doing what I can.”
Armitage enjoyed an encouraging summer, playing for the Northern Diamonds in the 50-over Rachael Heyhoe Flint Trophy, scoring 176 runs at the top of the order and taking six wickets with her leg-spin as they reached the final.
She captained the team on four occasions and is hoping to further develop her own game – and that of others – on her return to Hobart, where she spent last winter as well.
Now contracted as a full-time professional within the Northern Diamonds set-up, she continued: “For me, I had conversations with Dani (Hazell, Diamonds coach) about it, and she said that it’s the best thing for me to be playing as much cricket as possible at the moment.
“Last winter I played for Sandy Bay Sharks, and this winter it’s Clarence District Cricket Club.
“I will also be training with the Tasmanian state side whilst I’m there and also developing the other side of my cricket, which is coaching.”
Last month, Yorkshire men’s star Harry Brook spoke about the complications surrounding his planned trip to play for the same club given Coronavirus was causing issues with visas, admitting he was likely to have to remain in England.
Armitage, 28-years-old, explained her tale: “Cricket Tasmania have sponsored me as a coach.
“I was in and around with them last year, and they wanted me to come back. So they’ve helped me a lot to be able to get into the position I am.
“I’m very grateful to them for that, and I feel very lucky to be here right now.
“I finish my quarantine in Sydney on Saturday, where I currently am at the moment in government designated accommodation.
“If the borders open to Tasmania by then, I won’t have to do any more. If they don’t, I’ll have to do another two weeks in Tasmania.”
While wickets and runs will be hugely important for Armitage this winter in order to boost her immediate future, she is also looking forward to working on her long-term future – coaching.
“It’s something I really enjoy,” she added. “It’s a lot different to playing, but I love helping people who could potentially be in my position to progress their game.
“I find it really valuable, so I want to get as much experience of it as I can now so that it’s something I could step into once I retire.
“You never know with cricket. I might get a long-term injury and may never play again, which is why I’ve been doing the Fitness Instructor course as well. That might be something else I could go into if needed.”