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Counting down the days

Posted in Domestic Cricket

So here we are in 2012, closer to the next cricket season than the last one, and I find myself counting down the days to the first game of the campaign.

I’m sure it is the same up and down the country and every county cricketer, having trained hard in the gym, is looking forward to the weather changing as April gets closer. And at Derbyshire that is exactly the case, especially for those who have wintered solely in the East Midlands.

There has been a good mentality and attitude towards the training this winter and it has been a lot of fun, as well as hugely beneficial.

I have to confess that when we reported back for training in late October, however, it did seem very early and a long way from the season ahead.

As the weeks have progressed, the ‘vibe’ at training has been great and we’ve spurred each other on to train harder and harder. And with that training in the gym under our belts, it has meant that we are ready to work, individually and collectively, at our skills in preparation for being back full time.

By then our entire squad should be together again. Whether or not we have any more recruits, by then hopefully all our injured players will be fit again.

Garry Park and Mark Turner have already had much-needed operations and are on their individual roads to recovery, and Tom Knight may hopefully avoid the knife and be fit for April too.

We will certainly have our ‘tourists’ back from their very different winters. Tim Groenewald and Chesney Hughes return from time spent at home in South Africa and the Caribbean respectively, having both been in playing action.

David Wainwright

New signing David Wainwright is just one of the Derbyshire players to feature abroad this winter, having gone to the sub-continent with the Potential England Performance Programme

Ross Whiteley returns from Australia after working hard at the Darren Lehmann academy, and David Wainwright has been abroad to the sub-continent. We will also be welcoming back Martin Guptill for his second stint at the county.

Earlier I wrote that we were counting down the days to the season. Maybe it’s just me, but I have been solely focussed on how many days (47!) until we board the plane for our pre-season tour to Barbados.

It has absolutely nothing to do with the hot weather, white sandy beaches or the turquoise waters, but everything to do with the training and matches we’ll be participating in while we are there.

In all seriousness, though, I thoroughly enjoy all aspects of touring, seeing new places, varying cultures, eating fine local cuisine and playing cricket abroad. All of which we will get on our trip, and it will, by design, bring all of our winter training together and be the last part of our planning for the 2012 season.

It will also give our new captain, Wayne Madsen, time to take the reins in matches before the real competition starts.

So there you have it; a brief progress check on the squad and most of what’s been happening this winter.

I, for one, am yearning for warmer weather and the start of the season as I’m sure are some of my contemporaries. Here’s to a successful 2012 campaign with all connected to Derbyshire.

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