Dillon Pennington is picking the brains of the country’s top pacemen – including England legend Stuart Broad – to help him in his quest to improve and develop as a bowler.
The Worcestershire CCC Academy product has a thirst for knowledge and is eager to listen to and learn from his fellow professionals around the country circuit, in addition to the coaches at New Road.
Pennington has also spoken with the likes of England and Somerset’s Craig Overton and former England and Durham star Graham Onions, who is now bowling coach at Lancashire.
This season, he has produced several fine performances, taking a career-best nine wickets in the LV=Insurance County Championship match with Derbyshire and consistently taking wickets with the new ball in the Vitality Blast.
Now he is preparing for The Hundred after being a Wildcard pick of Birmingham Phoenix.
Pennington said: “I’m desperate to speak to other players, and I’ve been really lucky this year that we’ve played against some unbelievable players with exceptional careers.
“I’m hungry to get to speak to them and get to know how they go about what they do and how they achieved success.
“If I can take a little bit from a conversation from the likes of Stuart Broad, it goes a long way in my career and something I can take on and learn in my practice.
“It’s not just speaking to them. It’s watching them and how they go about their business for four days.
“I think a lot about the game and watch how people go about their practice and about playing, and it’s been great to learn.
“I’ve had some really good conversations over the last couple of years. All cricketers and these amazing players seem to be willing to have a conversation and communicate.”
Pennington added: “I’ve worked fairly hard on understanding how I can improve, and I’ve asked loads of questions of the coaches as well.
“It’s nice to get that reward for something clicking and something going well really, but I’ve got a long way to go.
“There is a lot more I want to improve on during the end of the season and going into the winter, and that will be my main focus.”
Worcestershire Bowling-Coach, Alan Richardson, said: “There is that drive there to get better constantly. Dillon is very inquisitive. He asks a lot of questions.
“He speaks to lots of other bowlers so, whenever we come up against experienced seamers or seamers that have played at a higher level, Dillon is keen to pick their brains.
“Whenever we play someone, he is chasing them around the outfield at the end of the game, trying to badger them about how they go about their business.
“That is all part of it for Dillon, all part of the drive. Physically he has been excellent, and mentally he is getting better; tactically and technically, he is getting better. He is giving himself the chance to get better, which is all we can ask for, really.
“He has spoken to Stuart Broad, Graham Onions, Craig Overton, anyone and everyone he thinks he can garner a bit of information from and reinforces what he is trying to do, rather than thinking there is a magic remedy out there that everyone else is doing and you’re not.”