Sir Bill Morris - If i had to start again ...

A football manager would describe football as a game of two halves; well, I could describe my life in the same way.

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Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

A football manager would describe football as a game of two halves; well, I could describe my life in the same way. Up to the point I retired, I always said there was a cricketer in me trying to get out. I had my schoolboy dreams like most people. I was born and brought up in a small rural village in Jamaica and cricket was my dominant interest. We played cricket in the morning, in the evening and at night. My parents were fairly ambitious for me and wanted me to have a career. They paid for supplementary tuition for me, which meant staying an hour after school for one-to-one academic tuition. But I used to bunk off and go to play cricket. I thought a whole day of school was enough.

It all came to light when my mother met the teacher at school and decided to get a progress report - 'How's Bill doing?' The teacher said: 'I was about to ask you that because I haven't seen him for months.' Boy, was I in trouble. I found it difficult to sit down for a few days. What I do know is that despite my love of the game, I am no cricketer. If playing cricket was a means of earning a living, I would starve. If I had to start again, I'd choose to get back onto the land and become a farmer in Jamaica.

I would have developed the family smallholding and gone to Holmwood agricultural college. One of the reasons I wanted to go there was because it had a wonderful cricket field. That would have been my life. My advice to a younger self would be: 'Be yourself'. You can kid every single person in the world - the one person you can't kid is yourself. In terms of work, don't worry about the next job. Just do the job you are doing to your best ability. Just be yourself and things will fit into place.

Sir Bill Morris was elected general secretary of the Transport and General Workers' Union in 1991 and retired in 2003.

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