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Paddy Upton: Cricket & Mental Conditioning Coach

  • Patrick Anthony Howard 'Paddy' Upton was born on 5 November 1968 in Johannesburg, Transvaal, South Africa
  • As a youngster, he represented the Western Province Schools U19 cricket team from grade 10 to grade 12 (1984-1986), captaining the team in 1986
  • He went to represent the Western Province U23 cricket team from 1988-1992, as captain in 1991–1992, and played for the Western Province senior cricket team in 1990-91 and 1993-94, scoring a century on first-class debut
  • Upton played rugby for Maties (Stellenbosch University) U19A, U20A and U21A teams, and for the first XV at University of Port Elizabeth (1990), and the University of Cape Town (1991)
  • In 1994 and at age 25 he retired from competitive cricket and rugby to take up the position of full-time Strength and Conditioning coach of the South African national cricket team
  • After completing a Masters Degree in Sport Science and at age 25, Upton cut his playing-career short to take up the full-time position of Strength and conditioning Coach for the South African cricket team, from 1994-1998
  • With a sport psychology major, and a second Masters degree (in Business Coaching), Upton redefined his career to begin work as Mental Conditioning coach (in sport) and Executive Coach (in Business) in 2003
  • He has since worked as Mental Coach and/or Performance Consultant to over 20 professional cricket, rugby, soccer and field hockey teams across South Africa, India and Australia
  • He has also served as personal Mental Coach to over 100 professional athletes from 11 different sports, and across five continents, including cricket, rugby, soccer, golf, tennis, swimming and World Tour surfing
  • Having been appointed the head coach of India in 2008, Gary Kirsten recommended the appointment of Upton in the dual role of Mental Conditioning coach and Strategic Leadership Coach
  • Kirsten - Upton due spent 3 years with the Indian team, during which time the team attained the top test ICC team ranking for their first time (2009), and went on to win the ICC World Cup in 2011
  • Following success with the Indian Cricket team, Upton was appointed Performance Director of the South Africa Cricket Team (Proteas) from 2011-2014
  • Between 2013-2018 Upton worked as Head Coach in 12 professional T20 cricket seasons, for five different teams across three tournaments, in Australia, India and Dubai
  • In 2015 he was awarded the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University Achiever Award, awarded to Alumni who made significant contributions to their specialist fields
  • Upton has published academic papers in the South African Medical Journal (Vol 86, No 5. 1996) and the British Journal of Sport Medicine, (Vol 6. 1996)
  • He also has co-authored "The Beer Drinkers Guide to Losing Weight" (Penguin Books, 1997) & "Sharing the Passion. Conversations with Coaches" (Advanced human Technologies, 2006)
  • He recently published his first book "The Barefoot Coach" in 2019, based on experiences and insights from his coaching journey over the 10-year period from 2008-2018

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