For most cricketers, it’s difficult to think too far into the future when you first graduate into the first-class system.

As a naive 18 year old, all you want to do when you get selected for domestic cricket is to go out and bat, bowl or field to the best of your potential.

I remember when I first started playing, the whole notion that cricket-doesn’t-last-forever wasn’t commonly spoken about in the locker rooms.

I guess in the back of most cricketers minds, all you’re thinking is you are going to play cricket for 10+ years and it’s going to be wonderful. There’s no need to be thinking long-term, or what steps you might need to take to secure your future.

Some cricketers eventually find themselves in the position I am in today.

For the first time in nine years, I was without a contract on the table. All of a sudden, I was left thinking ‘what do we do now?’.

For me, I have a young family so every decision I make goes back towards supporting them. Thankfully, my partner and I have always spoken at length on how we can best prepare ourselves for our family’s future.

We made decision to return to Queensland when we had an opportunity to be closer to family, and it allowed me the chance to reunite with the Bulls after a two-year stint in Tasmania.

I also recently signed a two-year deal with the Melbourne Renegades in the Big Bash League, which has provided some level of security in the domestic T20 competition.

Cameron Boyce exclusive insight

But the fact that we got to move home, be with family and now have that safety net of people around us – it’s just what we need right now.

What doesn’t get seen enough is the incredible support I receive from my wife – she just understands the ups and downs and the highs and lows of it all.

Knowing we have that safety net behind us, we really don’t have to rush into anything in the next twelve months.

But finding myself without a contract, for the first time in nine years, really made us wake up and prepare for life after cricket.

Albeit, I still feel as though that is some years away from now.

Not having an offer on the table for a period of time there was nerve-racking, but at the same time my partner and I have been pretty smart over the last six years of my career, making sure we’re setting ourselves up and doing all the right things in terms of financial planning.

One thing I’ve learnt over the last couple years is, I simply have greater priorities now outside of just cricket.

To be honest, 100% comes down to the birth of our little girl – since we welcomed her into the world, I just see life so differently.

Cameron Boyce exclusive insight

Whether or not I have good or bad day, I come home, and she’s happy to see me.

Someone as innocent and simple as she is makes you just think that you know you can have the worst day in the world, and you can come home and she makes you happy.

I know what actually matters in life and what I’m fighting for.

Cameron Boyce exclusive insight

When I was younger I never thought I was ever going to play professional cricket and a lot of people doubted me.

I proved to myself that I was good enough to compete at the highest level.

But now I’ve been given a new challenge in life, and that is for me to make our girl as proud as possible. I want her to be proud of her Dad, knowing that he played professional cricket whilst having fun and teaching her how to lead a happy and healthy life.

I honestly can’t wait to rock up to the Big Bash arena this year, in my new team colours.

It’s really exciting for me knowing I can go out there and perform without the pressure of having state cricket form on my back.

I can go out there and focus 100% on the tournament, and doing everything possible to help contribute towards success at the Renegades.

I have that two year deal with Melbourne, and whether I continue or not beyond that period, will depend on how I play.

But I know I’m in the best possible position right now to play my best cricket, and I’ll smile knowing my young girl will be in the crowd watching Daddy on the field.