Saturday, June 13th, 2015

County Preparing For Demanding Schedule Of Action

County Preparing For Demanding Schedule Of Action

Worcestershire will tomorrow (Sunday) launch their most concentrated period of cricket during the 2015 season with 22 days action out of the next 27.

The county will play four LV = County Championship and six NatWest T20 Blast matches during that period PLUS travelling days on top of that schedule.

It begins and ends with games against Warwickshire – a Championship match starting tomorrow morning at New Road and a home T20 Blast match under their name of Birmingham Bears on July 10.

The spell will include two blocks of six successive days cricket and will give players only limited recuperation time in between games – and virtually no time in between matches to practice their skills.

Worcestershire, who did not arrive back from Durham until the early hours of this morning, have already endured one intensive period when they faced three four-day matches with Somerset, Warwickshire and New Zealand in the space of 15 days.

But the county can call upon a top fitness and conditioning coach and physiotherapist in Ross Dewar and Ben Davies respectively to help the squad cope with the programme.

Assistant coach and bowling coach Matt Mason said: "It is going to test the squad, test the guys fitness and mental toughness.

"But these guys love playing and in the modern game they are used to it.We will try and rest them when we can.

"It will be difficult but we've got such a lot to play for, a little bit of scheduling like this won't knock us down. We'll keep trying as hard as we can."

Dewar said: "For us, it's about making sure Bump (Steve Rhodes) and Mase (Matt Mason) and Mitch (Daryl Mitchell) have plenty of options to choose from.

"We had a tough period when we had the away Warwickshire game and then almost straight away the New Zealand game.

"It is then a case of 'what do these boys need' and 'when can they get their rest' and we start the recovery process straight away.

"We don't wait until the day after to start recovery. It's 'bang' – start straight away.

"You finish a four-dayer on Wednesday, then all the coaches everywhere in the country will want to practice T20 skills on a Thursday and play on the Friday.

"At Northants, we were back at quarter to one Saturday morning after the T20 game and then playing on the Sunday.

"It's just about what can we do to make sure everything goes well with the boys. It's assessing what they need most."

*We will be featuring an interview with Ross on the Worcestershire CCC website and the County 365 magazine.