Nottinghamshire bowling coach Andy Pick believes next week’s bowling camp to Oman will be hugely beneficial in preparing the players for the 2018 season.
After a post-season break, the team have been busy either side of Christmas maintaining their fitness and practicing their cricket skills.
But the trip to the Middle East – from 15 to 24 February – will enable both spin and pace bowlers to increase the volume of balls they deliver to mirror the strain that will be put on their bodies during the summer.
Outdoor practice in the heat will also be more akin to what they will encounter in Specsavers County Championship, Royal London One-Day Cup and Vitality Blast , with the new campaign beginning with a four-day clash at Old Trafford on13 April.
“This gives us the opportunity to get outside stretch the legs and get used to bowling on grass once more.”
“The main reason for the camp is to get the workloads up,” said Pick. “The guys have been indoors, bowling off short runs for most of the winter.
“This gives us the opportunity to get outside stretch the legs and get used to bowling on grass once more.
“The sports science boys tell us that if we can get a good workload into them at this stage, then when the season starts, and the workload tends to go up, they will be ready. It’s almost like an investment.
“If we can get 65 to 70 overs into the bowlers over a nine-day period, then the benefits of doing that will stay with them. The heat will make the players work that little bit harder.
“When the season starts in earnest and they might have to bowl 25 overs in a day, yet they have only bowled 16 or 17 a week indoors, so we have to find that transition.
“The other thing is, it gives the bowlers a chance to have a bat. In the winter at home they tend to be a little bit down the pecking order, but while we are out there, we will bowl at ourselves and not have any batters with us.”
After returning to England, the bowlers will have just over a week before they then fly out with the batsmen and coaching team for the pre-season tour to Potchefstroom from March 5 to 18.
While in South Africa, the team will play a friendly match against fellow county Yorkshire, and Pick believes that the two overseas trips coming so close together will reap further rewards.
The pre-season tour is when the bowlers will really be able to stake a claim for their places.”
He said: “When we get to Potch, we don’t want it to take the first three or four days for the players to get into it and by going to Oman first, the bowlers will already be up to speed.
“That then equates to better practice for the batsmen, as well as getting more out of the tour as well.
“The pre-season tour is when the bowlers will really be able to stake a claim for their places. The Oman camp is more for getting overs in the legs.”
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