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  • Shahbaz Choudhry: Pace Journal started as a passion project

    Published on April 14, 2022

    The fast bowling coach, Shahbaz Choudhry creates a unique platform of the most timeless content with international cricket star, Tymal Mills.
    What inclined you towards cricket and how?

    When I was 12 or 13, a family friend would take me to train with his son who was a county cricketer at the time. When he dropped me back home, he said to my dad, “your son is the fastest I have ever seen in our age group and he isn’t even playing for a club, why don’t you sign him up?” From that point on, the rest is history as they say. I was put forward for District trials, and after 6 balls the coaches stated that I should be playing in the actual Berkshire county squad. Then I performed for Berkshire followed by Middlesex County Cricket Club where I played through the age group system for them and then later I was signed by Northamptonshire CCC in 2009.
    What was your differentia?
    Speed is a spectacle and watching speed being displayed in real life is a special experience. I was seriously obsessed with the whole element of speed, and I wanted to make that my identity. My passion has always been to bowl as fast as I can. As a teenager, I used to joke around saying, “if I can’t bowl 100mph, I won’t bother playing at all”. Whether it’s good or bad, when I look back, I laugh at how true I stayed to that statement! 

    What derailed your progress?

    I over prioritised technique. In hindsight, it sounds silly but growing up, I actually thought that if I could perfect my technique, then I would be able to bowl 100mph. Fast bowling and speed doesn’t work like that. In order to be effective, you need a lot more than just technique and this is what I failed to balance during my career. I changed my action so much that I actually lost my original ability to bowl. My bowling action had been changed so much that I didn’t know what was normal anymore and I didn’t know what felt right. I was lost. I couldn’t bowl fast and I couldn’t even bowl straight. From 2012 to 2017, I struggled a lot. I would randomly start crying whenever I thought about bowling. In order to distance myself from cricket I stopped exercising completely and started overeating. I put on over 30kg of excess weight. I didn’t watch any videos of fast bowling and ended up hating it. It was a very dark and challenging period of my life.
    How did you overcome this challenge and what led to Pace Journal?
    In 2017, I decided to start bowling again. Playing as a professional was not the first thought in my mind. Initially, I just wanted to get fit and see if I could right the wrongs of my past. As I was training and getting deeper into my comeback, a good friend of mine noticed that my old habits were creeping in again. 

    During 2012-2017, I studied a lot about branding, marketing and advertising – I thought it would be a good idea for me to start a ‘side project’ to distract myself from thinking about my bowling action all the time. This is where the seed of Pace Journal was planted. I had a concept for the brand, “to become the home of the most credible insights and experiences of fast bowling in the world”.  

    Countless interviews with some of the biggest names in the world of cricket such as Jofra Archer, Ishant Sharma, Lockie Ferguson and Kyle Jamieson sprouted into timeless information about bowling actions, working on speed and developing as a player. This led to the upsurge of interest in the Pace Journal family. England cricket star, Tymal Mills himself joined Pace Journal as an official partner and ambassador and subsequently made it one of the most credible cricket platforms ever.

    Shahbaz’s drive and the quality of the content is attracting more and more people to the Pace Journal family as it grows stronger day by day.Attachments area


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