Hildy back in full training

James Hildreth has now completed his rehabilitation following a hamstring injury which put a premature end to his 2020 season.

We spoke to him earlier today to discuss his return to full training.

“I’m back to being fully fit and I’m ready to go,” he said. “We had our medical screenings and fitness testing this week and that went really well. I’m good to go and the injury is absolutely fine.”

Now that he’s back training at the Cooper Associates County Ground, what does a typical day currently look like for James Hildreth?

“The training schedule has been organised so that guys are going into the Ground at different times in small groups and it’s pretty much individual sessions. The morning involves trying to sort out the kids. Then I head to the Ground and do my session before heading home to do some homeschooling. Then it’s back to the ground for another session. After that it’s tea, bath and bed for the children and then repeat that the following day!”

Due to Covid-19 the majority of the players have been unable to go abroad for the winter. This has meant that the Somerset squad has had an extended winter together. Does James think that this has been of benefit to the players?

“It’s great that we’ve had this time together,” he said. “I think it will certainly be beneficial and we’ve got a really good group. It’s a top bunch of lads who all get on well. This has really brought us together and it looks like everyone is going to be fit and firing for the start of the season.

“Weather permitting, we will be looking to get outside next week which is great because the lads are raring to go. We’ve spent a lot of time in the indoor school and the boys are itching to get out on the grass.”

James has been impressed by the impact that the younger players have had on the squad this winter.

“The standards just get higher and higher each year,” he said. “The young players coming on to the staff these days are such good athletes. They are so fit and strong, and it wasn’t necessarily like that when I started out. The new pros are almost a different breed and that stems from the work that Steve Snell does with the Academy and Matt Drakeley does with the Pathway. They come into the First Team squad and their ready to go and they are really helping to push and improve our standards. Last year you saw that transfer itself onto the pitch for a few of the guys. This shows that our Pathway system is clearly working. It’s not only producing really good cricketers, it’s also producing athletes and people with good character.”

The Government recently published its roadmap out of Lockdown, and as James explains the players can’t wait for Members and supporters to return to the Cooper Associates County Ground.

“It’s so important,” he said. “Cricket is a sport for everyone. We’re a Members Club and we play to entertain people so it will be so big when we can get supporters back in to watch games. Having the atmosphere that they create is just huge and it’s why we all play. You want to be out there in front of people who want to watch you play. I know that the Members are desperate to come back in, but we are desperate to see them and have that interaction. Cricket is so important to so many people and we just want to be able to play a part in making everyone a little bit happier.”

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Next MatchLeicestershire V Somerset

22/04/2021 11:00 - Grace Road