Thursday, March 2nd, 2017

Mason Says Managing Of “real Diamond” Tongue Is Key Factor

Mason Says Managing Of “real Diamond” Tongue Is Key Factor

Matt Mason believes Worcestershire have a "real diamond" in young paceman Josh Tongue but says "how he is managed going forward is really important" after his injury setbacks.

Tongue has undergone a winter of rehab under the expert eyes of first team physio Ben Davies and strengthening and conditioning coach Ross Dewar after having surgery on a lumbar spine injury in September.

The 19-year-old is part of the County's squad for the pre-season camp in Abu Dhabi which gets underway next week.

Bowling coach Mason said: "Josh has just basically suffered what most young bowlers have to go through.

"It is a tough job and when you move from an Academy programme into a senior programme the work load is a lot higher so you are going to get injuries.

"Hopefully now he is over the worst of those and it's really important we manage Josh very carefully in the next year or so going forward because in him we have got a little diamond of a bowler.

"I think he has got big things ahead of him but at the same time we've got to manage his work correctly so we get the benefit three, four, five years down the track and not just in the next couple of months.

"How he is managed going forward is really important. He will slowly get back to bowling now."

Tongue impressed when making his first class debut against Oxford MCCU at the start of last season and he was also named in the squad for away Specsavers County Championship clash with Northamptonshire.

Mason is also excited about the potential of another pace bowler in George Scrimsahw who has also been undergoing rehab after a back problem led to his early withdraw from the Young Lions training camp in the UAE this winter.

He said: "Hopefully his (Tongue's) team-mate George Scrimshaw, who is another promising young bowler, won't be too far behind after his back problem.

"It is exciting what the future holds for us in the bowling stakes but at the moment we've just got to make sure we do the right thing for them now.

"George will miss the start of the season but again it's just one of those things for young bowlers."