Saturday, April 01, 2017

Back in the game !

Second of 3 posts for today. Today is always a special day and I do like to write for it.

I've made a decision ...

A big decision .... It will mean pain. But it will also mean lots of fun. Which will make all the pain so totally worth it.

I really miss the running around. The feeling of freedom that I got from pinning the ears back and just running. Top speed. Faster than the wind. So fast you could feel that wind blowing through the ears.

And the best I had with the running was with the cricket. I used to run so fast and needed lots of room when I hit that top speed. Something to do with having the power to go Very Fast ... and no brakes ! Yep. Cricket was good for that.

And .... check out the abs on that :
Yep. Might have been making preparations for that running around again. Maybe.

What's brought all this on ? My outsides making huge steps in improving is one trigger. One negative to all that power in my legs is that my skeleton (knees, bones) never really developed enough to contain the power. I'd run Fast, my knees would feel like they were exploding. So I wore knee pads to keep everything together. It's been many years since I've been able to wear the knee pads ... My knees were just too torn up and the knee pads were what initially tore them up.

The other damaged bits of me have been making big improvements as well. My ankles aren't fixed yet but they've survived the walking around for work since I stopped wearing those bandages. Happy days.

The rest of me is a bit sore (I am 42 after all) but my usual pattern with the cricket has been to be sore in the early days of the season and then things get better as the match fitness improves. That's always been the way. I've been blessed (or cursed?!) with a certain degree of natural fitness. The curse there is that it means I've been able to skip the training one would normally do for running around and other types of sports. That's kept my bones intact but doesn't set up the conditioning hardening or the muscle memory.

But .... it's getting there. It used to take maybe two or three games to get up to speed again.

I think the muscle memory is still there as well. I feel my right arm itching to run through the bowling action again, even after all those years away from the bowling.

I wonder actually ...

Last time I tried to bowl, there was a flaw in my shoulder from the old damage. It caused a hitch in my action that destroyed all control of length. Translation - the ball was as likely to come out arrowing in on someone's head as it was to be aimed at the pitch. This was particularly dangerous considering that my normal bowling makes the ball swing through the air a lot. So as the batsman tries to duck backwards out of the way, the ball follows them ...

Ouch ! Wonder what the early season net practice will turn out like. Looking forward to that early season stuff. New beginnings and all that.

Batting has always been a challenge and it's what I fell back on after the bowling ran into trouble. I have unfinished business there ... I could get decent starts and anchor the team while mayhem happened at the other end ... but I never got the big scores or massive innings that won the game for our team.

Yep. Unfinished business there. Good ... but not great. That's something I'd like to have a chance to correct.

Fielding was always fun. When let off the leash and fielding closer in, I took it as a challenge between me and batsman. Could I anticipate where they were going to nudge the ball ? Who would win the race between getting the ball back in and the batsman getting to the other end ? Fielding rewarded perfection with results.

I liked the fielding.

Yep. Cricket again. A daunting prospect perhaps at 42 years old, an age where I'm wise (HAHAHAHA!) to remember the pain from previous cricket. But there is that instinct though. To run. To gallop. To chase that ball. To pit the wits against the opposition. To be part of a team again.

Computer games are fun and all but the multiplayer is tainted by cheating and it not being a level playing field. Cricket is totally level. It supports all shapes and sizes, it's playable for both young and old. It rewards skill, cleverness and the ability to out think the opposition. It's both a team game and a game for individuals. But it usually needs a team effort to win.

I like cricket. I miss the playing. I miss contributing to us winning, both by being a loud little yappy so and so constantly encouraging my team mates through shouting nonsense and by the fielding, batting and if I'm fortunate maybe ... bowling !

Looking forwards to the season to come !
Especially if it looks like that. Pardon the sun glinting off the skipper's head there. It's blinding isn't it. That was at my last game, played at a lovely ground in the middle of rural Bristolshire.
That too !

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