I bring you this blog fresh from the dark depths of the other side of the world, Western Australia to be precise. Except it’s not so dark! In fact it’s very bright, and a touch warm, but I won’t rub it in!
It means I’ve traded the Ames Levett Indoor School of Canterbury, for a second stint in Perth – the same place I spent a very beneficial winter in 2007/08. So, after 3 years of university (and for the record, yes I did achieve that Desmond 2:2 I so longed for!), I packed up my bags once again and this is where I find myself dedicating a winter to my cricket. Already 7 weeks into the trip, and with everything I’m learning it seems to be flying by. Before we know it it’ll be Christmas, then the countdown to day one of pre-season begins.
So with the season in mind, it is my responsibility to knuckle down, work hard and get myself ready for what I hope will be a highly successful season for Kent County Cricket Club. With the help of fellow teammate Chris Piesley, who is also amongst the Perth ranks, this is what we have been doing on a weekly basis.
A usual week for Pies (now known as ‘Porky’) and I goes something like this: two batting sessions with well regarded coach Noddy Holder (Tuesday & Thursday), two nets with our clubs (also Tuesday and Thursday), four weight sessions in the gym (two upper body, two lower body), one long distance cardio session on the bike, and two sprint sessions on the beach. This is then followed by a game every Saturday, and a Twenty20 every other Sunday. It’s a good mix of training and fitness, and the games allow us to put our skills learnt into practice.
As I previously mentioned, we’ve been doing our batting work with a specialist batting coach called Neil ‘Noddy’ Holder, which takes place at his own indoor centre called Revolution Sports. Noddy was the batting coach of former Australian opening batsman Justin Langer and is highly respected around the Western Australian state. Rob Key has done a fair bit of work with him, as well as many other international players around the globe. I know that Keysie holds him in high esteem also and was one that recommended I work with him. Noddy is a guy that has strong beliefs and deep values; he keeps his methods very simple and gets them across in a very clear and concise way. I actually really enjoy his style of coaching, and listening to the many past stories he has up his sleeve. I really feel that my game has made good strides in such a small period of time under his guidance, which I hope will continue.
Aside from Perth, I’ve been keeping up with news and events back at home via the Internet. I’d like to say a big welcome to our new signing of the winter, Michael Powell. I’m sure everyone will agree that his record speaks for itself and I have no doubt his experience and runs will be an excellent addition to our squad. I see that we’re not far from appointing a new coach also, which again is great news for the Club, and I am sure the club will get the right man. I also hear the lads back at Canterbury are working hard in the gym with seven sessions a week, so no stone is being left unturned this year as we look to hit the ground running come April. That’s all for now…enjoy your Christmas…and enjoy the weather!