Mid Season Report

Whilst the plan was to spend the of season on rehab, training and fitness it is fair to say that the majority of my time has spent on rehab, which has been a lot longer and slower than I had anticipated, but in a rather perverse way that has been good.

Appears that there are a significant number of issues contributing to my array of problems: injury, scar tissue from old injuries, body compensating (badly), lack of use and mobility that in effect I have shelved plans to work on a few specifics and pretty much am rebuilding the old body. More thrift shop than 6 million dollar man it is fair to say.

To date I have pretty much only focussed on my lower body i.e knees, hamstrings, thighs and hips. It has been slow and somewhat painful but my range of movement is so much better, my flexibility is good and my strength getting better. The good news is that the issues do all seem to be soft tissue related, are responding well and on a day to day basis there is a lot less pain and discomfort.

The last two weeks in particular have seen significant progress and I now have a much longer stride pattern, am picking up my knees better and have done a couple of short shutte sessions with no adverse effects.

Training wise I have only been able to do some batting and bowling in the nets, but that has been a good gauge of how things are going. My bowling has far more rhythm and fluidity to it now I can approach the stumps pretty much pain free and with a more solid and consistent stride, and my batting is pretty solid: in fact in my last net session I was able to play the sweep shot, something I had not even tried since returned to the game.

Two areas that I have not started working on really are training (cricket skills) and fitness (other than some indoor bikem a little upper and lower and my core) and this is where I start to see an issue.

Realistically I think I need another month of rehab on my lower body before I can start any real training, so whilst I will try and do a little as my body continues to approve I think at best I will have 6 to 8 weeks before the start of the season (assuming body doesn’t break down) and I am far from convinced that will be enough to see me through the season.

It gets worse ….. as I think it will take me two months of rehab on my arm, shoulder and neck which would leave me with only a month to work on upper body strength and throwing. Again, not nearly enough time.

I have not even started to lose weight as when not rehabbing or walking the dogs I have basically been resting so I have three months to lose about 10kg. 0.83kg a week (1.82lbs) is probably just on the limit of what can be achieved and this has to be a priority as my body simply won’t survive another season trying to lug this much weight around.

Although in many ways this is a little negative I see that as a short term issue as longer term it seems that the old body will be capable of a lot more than I had envisaged, so while it will take longer and mean less cricket in 2023, it will be much better long term.

So what of 2023?

Far too early to be precise but with Staffordshire County Cricket (Seniors) confirming that one 59 year old can play for the Over 60’s I currently have the opportunity to focus on that. It will be for the Second Team as there is a much better 59 year old than me pencilled in for the First Team, and of course another 59 year old may put their name in the frame, but to remain positive the indicators at the moment are that I will be part of the Over 60s Second Team playing on a Tuesday as an all rounder. This has been my hope/objective/focus since I started playing again and everything in 2023 will be focussed on this.

As such my current thoughts on a weekly structure are:

  • Sunday – plan on not playing other than an occasional Charity Game with No Boundaries Cricket Club which are not going to be challenging and I have a lot of control over how much I bat, bowl and field.
  • Monday – plan on a evening net and light training session to prepare for Tuesday
  • Tuesday – match day. I think there are 12 games before the end of July and then a knockout competition so it won’t be every week but I think that is a good thing.
  • Wednesday – am assuming I will need a day to recover and am thinking a game of golf may be a good idea.
  • Thursday – think a net would be a good idea or a friendly charity game where I can concentrate on say one discipline rather than see it is a ‘full’ game.
  • Friday – probably do some coaching to keep the body moving without putting any strain on it.
  • Saturday – this is, I think, going to be the hardest part of the plan as I would like to play on a Saturday but I suspect I am not going to appeal much to a Second Team and whilst I could move to a club which puts out a Third and Fourth team that tends to mean playing on some rented ground with poor facilities which I am not going to do. Sorry, may sound selfish, but I tried in and it holds no appeal changing in car, nowhere to sit/chat, often no scorer or umpire and no clubhouse for after the game. I will go without a game rather than play in those conditions. So currently my plan/option is to make myself available for Barlaston 2s on a Saturday and accept that means late call ups and very few games. I think this will be fine for 2023 as I don;t think I will be able to commit to two full games a week and this sort of removes the temptation. Probably not sustainable in 2024 (if fitness is how I hope) in which case I will need to revisit but that really is a long way off.

For now though a couple of quite weeks over Christmas and then in Q1 it will be:

Rehab – Fitness – Training – Practice – Parents – Diet – Walk Dogs – Spain (need some R&R and sunshine) – NBCC – and as things stand a bit of consultancy.

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