Monday 19th May
08.15 hrs (On the train).
Cold over night in some places it was down to zero or lower here in the UK (Scotland) but a lovely blue sky sunny morning, but still with the Northerly wind that is keeping the temperature down.
No evening practice at least until Wednesday and the only chance of a practice otherwise would be if I was to get up ridiculously early and have a chuck around between 6.30 and 7.00. I’ve done it before and if the sunny weather prevails I might do so because I obviously do need to practice. No injuries this morning apart from bruising and slightly swollen fingers on my right hand. I feel a bit stiff but nothing of any concern.
I was watching the Ashes in Australia from a couple of years ago – watching Warne bowling and the fact that even he does get smashed all over the park sometimes continuously getting smashed for fours and this is heartening. But in our games this has a dramatic affect on the score across 40 overs especially if the other team doesn’t have as many spin bowlers. Looking back again this morning I think I need to do several things –
· Concentrate on accuracy and get the ball down the middle on the stumps.
· Give up on pitching it wide either side.
· Continue to practice with the Leg Break, but not use it until I can get it down the centre on the stumps – not worry too much about whether it turns big or not in match situations.
· Don’t use the flipper much in games concentrate on Top-spinners, Wrong Uns and Leg breaks.
· Try and get faster – look at the walk in and the issue with “Driving the hips forward”.
· Review all this on a game by game basis.
The rest of the team do acknowledge I have improved, so if I keeping going and keep practicing bit by bit I should make small advances. I’ve just got to temper my own expectations. But I am disappointed with the Leg Break situation – I really did think that was coming together and yesterday in between umpiring and taking photo’s I was trying to bowl them on their practice wicket and wasn’t getting anywhere. I feel I need to have a practice where I’m throwing the ball back and forth to someone as I did with Thomas and Alex with a set of stumps. That way you can practice with some kind of consistent approach and it seems to be more affective than practicing on your own and there’s the obvious benefit of someone offering encouragement.