Sunday, 17 March 2013

Forgetful fingers

Another week and I'm afraid it is again my sad duty to write a depressing post about things having gone wrong, or to be more specific, not having gone right. Bowling in the nets today I again had the same problem as last week, not quite as bad but debilitating nevertheless. It essentially consists of my fingers having forgotten what it is they're supposed to be doing in releasing the ball. Everything else is fine, but the ball just seems to slip out of my hand without that feeling of rip just as I release the ball. Its such an annoying problem, especially as normal nets with batsmen is almost the worst place to work through a resolution. Given an empty net and a bag of balls I could probably get it sorted in a single evening, but as it is I've lost two weeks.

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

A professional attitude

There has inevitably been a great deal of controversy over Australia's decision to drop four players from the Test series in India for not preparing an assignment given to them by their coach, and unsurprisingly much of the reaction has been negative, regarding the actions taken as a clumsy and counter-productive overreaction. While this is an understandable response, and one that I shared initially, after reading this article by Brydon Coverdale I found my mind entirely changed.

If you want to save time reading the article, it boils down to this: These are highly-paid sportsmen doing a job, and this doesn't stop when they leave the field. They had ample time to complete a relatively simple task and failed to do so, and it is inconceivable that professional sportsmen could go four days without thinking about ways to improve the team's performance for the time required to complete the task. If they still couldn't think of anything, "don't know" would have been an acceptable answer provided it was an honest one. If they couldn't get this done then right now they are not serious enough about playing Test cricket. "You're a grown man with your own brain and you get paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to play this game. You're a professional. So why haven't you acted like one?" It's a very persuasive argument.

Sunday, 10 March 2013

Take 2

After a couple of weeks off while my toe recovered I restarted my pre-season preparations about a month ago and while no one session was worth blogging about I thought I'd briefly write up what's been happening.

As for the toe, the swelling has mainly gone and once some of the goo had found a way out of the side of the toenail it's stopped being painful. I can't be quite sure yet how damaged the nail is but at present it doesn't look like falling out, although it is a rather repulsive shade of purple and will be so for a long while yet until it grows out.

I've had three net sessions since I returned to action, and the first two were very promising indeed. The toe didn't cause me any problems and I was bowling well with good form, a slightly faster and flatter trajectory, good spin and turn and above all a good shape. I've been attempting to incorporate a few technical elements into my action, fiddly little things like the way my toes are pointed and how I rotate my torso, and it seems to be working really well. If I can bowl like this all season and get some good solo practise in the next few months I should have a bumper year, as I can say without too much equivocation these two sessions constitute some of the best bowling I've ever done.