CHRIS SILVERWOOD: Slow but steady progress on the fitness front
I played for the Middlesex seconds against Notts on Monday and then also last Wednesday against Northants, where I ended up with 3-35. Having also taken 2-10 against Notts things seem to be coming on all right. It s just the case that I m at the stage no
I played for the Middlesex seconds against Notts on Monday and then also last Wednesday against Northants, where I ended up with 3-35. Having also taken 2-10 against Notts things seem to be coming on all right.
It's just the case that I'm at the stage now where I'm playing 50-over matches and just building it up slowly, and getting my knee used to all that running, getting that pounding on it day in and day out.
No matter how fit you get in the gym it is all about bowling fitness, and that is literally what I am doing now.
It is just bowling and bowling and trying to get the match fitness back, and really just getting everything switched back on for the championship.
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At the moment I probably couldn't get through a four-day game. When my legs get tired my knee starts tightening up a little bit. I'm just about there, but not quite yet.
It could be any time now that I make my return, though. As soon as I can get through these games without the knee tightening up or anything, then I will declare myself fit. But it really is a case of suck it and see at the moment.
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I'm playing all the one day games for the second team, working towards the four day game.
I don't want to let anyone down by pulling up injured or anything like that, so that's the current target.
At the moment I couldn't declare myself 100 per cent fully fit, but I'm probably at the 90 per cent mark.
Alan Richardson and Nick Compton, who have just returned from injury, both played against South Africa at Uxbridge, and Alan bowled beautifully.
He has literally followed the same route back to fitness as I have by playing for the second team and building up the match practice at that level.
He is doing, or has already done, what I am in the process of doing, just getting back up to speed.
The match against South Africa sort of fizzled out on the last day due to the rain, but I think both sides got what they wanted out of the game.
It was obviously great for Alan to get through the game and bowl well, and come out the other side feeling 100 per cent confident that he can go into the championship.
And of course it was a very special day for young Eoin Morgan because getting 100 against South Africa is a fantastic achievement.
Our next County Championship game against Gloucestershire is tomorrow, and it's going to be a big game. After the two championship wins and then the draw with Northants we have some momentum and we're hoping to build on that and make a push for promotion.
We've had a good Twenty20 campaign and leading back into the Championship you hope that you can take that momentum with you, carrying on from where you left off.
The biggest thing that you've got to watch out for is that the people who are prepared to bat in the middle need to adjust to a different mind-set.
In the Twenty20, with just 20 overs, you've really just got to get on with it. But in the Championship obviously you've got a whole day to bat, so a different style of play is needed.
The aim is to pick up from where we left off and to keep the bandwagon rolling.
Chris Silverwood was talking to Simon Jackson