Jefferson looking to make Bang
Nottinghamshire batsman Will Jefferson has experienced a few ups and downs during his career but he is looking to impress on his second visit to the sub-continent this winter as England A prepare for their tour of Bangladesh.
Jefferson joined Notts on a three-year contract in August 2006 after struggling to secure a first-team place at Essex but he has long been thought of as a future England player since bursting onto the county scene in 2002 with nearly 800 runs at an average of just under 40.
The highlight of that season for the 6 feet 9 inch right-hander was coincidentally an innings of 165 against Notts, which prompted Essex to grant him his cap.
Durham University was where Jefferson first started to impress and like Nasser Hussain and James Foster before him he chose to further his development at Chelmsford but an incident in his bathroom in March 2006 would have a significant effect on his future career.
The opener severed 70 per cent of the tendons in his left wrist trying to push open a window when his hand went through the glass. He underwent surgery but missed the start of the season and Mark Pettini secured one of the opening positions, precipitating Jefferson's move.
He is now determined to take his chance and has been working hard to ensure he is at the top of his game.
Jefferson told ecb.co.uk: "I felt I had done quite a bit before Christmas, I have been involved in the national skills group program set up by Peter Moores at Loughborough and I think I made a bit of an impression in Mumbai on the ECB Academy tour, in front of coaches John Abrahams and Jack Birkenshaw.
"Being picked for the national skills program and being a bit older than some of the other guys, was probably more of a surprise than the A team selection.
"I worked really hard in the three month period leading up to Christmas and really took on board the advice that was being given and by the time Christmas came round I thought my name should be in the frame (for the A team) especially with people dropping out through injury or other reasons and it was thrilling news when it came through."
Jefferson is eyeing the new season and has fully committed himself to Nottinghamshire having purchased a property in the midlands.
He continued: "I have been training three days a week at Notts and I have bought a house there so it is all going well.
"I have got Rob Ferley (also of Notts) moving in. He is a friend and cricketer from my Durham University days and he is renting a room from me - and hopefully looking after the house while I am away!"
An A team tour can be a turning point in any players` career. On the equivalent 2003-4 tour of India Kevin Pietersen hit four hundreds in four games and finished with a first-class average of 54.48, which marked him down as a player of true class.
Jefferson will be hoping to make a similar impression but is aiming to play as much cricket as possible as a starting point.
Jefferson explained: "Obviously I am looking to getting selected and hopefully I can play in every single match which will give me the best chance of scoring as many runs as I can.
"I have not set out any specific goals statistically wise other than to score as many runs as possible.
"I am looking to fulfil my potential and during my time at Loughborough I have begun to feel like I am doing so.
"We did a lot of spin work before Christmas but recently we have been developing different aspects to become a more rounded cricketer.
"There will obviously be a lot of opportunities to face spin in Bangladesh although being an opener I need to play seam well also.
The Academy has been a very productive area for producing Test cricketers like Pietersen and Andrew Flintoff and Jefferson has seen potential in many of his colleagues.
He added: "Steven Davies has impressed me - he seems to have a very good temperament for someone who is only 20-years-old, Stuart Broad also stood out before he joined up with England for the Commonwealth Bank Series in Australia.
"I also worked quite closely with Nick Compton, who had a great season for Middlesex, and Matt Prior, and both looked excellent players."