Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Joe update

Physio today at the hospital; It's been a while since the last visit as one of them was cancelled. In short the physio lady was pleased with Joe's progress and has set some new targets and exercises and has made appointments (Subject to date confirmation) for an exercise class.

* Joe needs to put more force into massaging the scars to break down the scar tissue.
* Joe needs to start using his heel and the ball of his foot more and has been given some drills to get this going and he needs to do it when he walks - even if initially it's done in an exaggerated manner that looks and feels odd.
* Needs to put more emphasis into using the bad leg when doing weight bearing drills.
*Will start school with a crutch and the boot.
*Still needs to rest it as much as possible elevated higher than his heart when possible.

Next Thursday we're at the fracture clinic as well and we'll get to see how the bones are doing. When that happens I'll shoot some pic's of how the bones and the scars are doing and report on how the Dr feels he's going.

The Paddock boys come good!

The Paddock boys come good.
Lads that I've introduced to cricket including my own son Ben have won awards this year in three of the 'Best' catergories at the annual awards event at our club. I had a feeling last week as you may have read -  that it was going to be a close call between Ben (In white) and his best mate Kieran (In green) with regards to 'Under 13's bowler of the year'. The other lad Harry 'Bat' Hodgson is more Joe's mate and he's in the under 11's. Because Joe's out of action this year I've not had any idea as to how Harry's been getting on, but he's got the potential to be a really good all round cricketer and what I like about him and so too the coaches - is that he is an exceptionally good and enthusiastic fielder, chases the ball down and is an all-round athlete...fast, energetic and agile.  

What a brilliant day! Basildon and Pitsea CC Funday looked doomed to a typically British rained off bank holiday weekend, but the cricket Gods must have looked down and thought "We'll keep that bit in the corner dry". The rest of the country had rain and showers and we had fine weather with the sun making a frequent appearance. It was predicted a washout for most of the week leading up to Monday and then as the data firmed up on Saturday there looked to be an element of certainty. I was hopeful though - the weather pattern was one of those that looked as though it might just skim us and that's exactly what happened, leaving us with a warm, cloudy bright day with longish periods of sunshine.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Good year for the Dave Thompson bowling academy!

I've just been looking at the stats for our club and it looks like there's a chance that either Ben or Kieran will take the prize for the U13's bowler of the year. I was the one that introduced Kieran to cricket and taught him to bowl in the Paddock and over at The Rec.

Kieran on paper looks to be the best statistically, but Ben has won it before and did so without having the best stats. When he was awarded the prize it was mentioned that he'd won it on the basis of his attitude and his approach to bowling e.g. a kind of poker faced approach where - whatever happened he gave the impression that it didn't matter and wasn't affected if the ball was hit for 4 or 6. Again this year he's gone through the year with no histrionics, his head doesn't go down and he bowls with full commitment and enthusiasm and bowls both in the U13's and U15's and has done really well in the U15's.

The stats...


Best bowling 2 for 11
Average - 16.75 (Runs conceded per wicket)
Economy 3.11 (Runs per over)
Strike rate 23.25 (Balls per wicket)


16.2 - 4 - 63 - 10
Best bowling 3 for 14
Avearge 6.30 (Runs conceded per wicket)
Economy 3.86 (Runs per over)
Strike rate 9.72 (Balls per wicket)

It looks like a clear cut win for Kieran, but I reckon it'll be close as they're likely to look at things such as attitude, committment, technique and the likes. Kieran's done really well, primarily I reckon because of his ability to produce in-swing, he's not fast, but he's accurate with regards to his line and length and coupled with that he gets the ball to swing.

Ben on the hand, doesn't swing the ball at all as far as I'm aware and he gets his wickets by varying the pace - sometimes enormously and bowling a fairly good line and length. Anecdotally, I think Ben has been pretty good this year with regards to wides and no-balls, one daft thing that he has done, which I've seen him do in each match is bowl bouncers to good batsmen. He gets away with it usually the once, but up till the point where I had a word with him, he'd bowl a second one and the bats were always ready for it and generally put it away for 4's and 6's.

With a little work with the coaches speaking to him and getting him to produce a good seam presentation in order to create swing - I reckon he'll do really well in the U15's next season.

Just thought Ryan as well could be a contender...

Ryan (not in the Dave Thompson Bowling academy)

20 - 0 - 106 - 6
Best Bowling 2 for 21
Avearge 17.67 (Runs conceded per wicket)
Economy 5.30 (Runs per over)
Strike rate 20.00 (Balls per wicket)

Friday, August 24, 2012

I started a Forum!

For years now I've been discussing bowling on forums, initially Harrowdrive and then Simply Cricket and when that was taken over and right up till today Big Cricket. But BigCricket is under seige from spammers and may become unusable, so I've looked into creating my own forum and have started it tonight. So if you are a regular on the Bigcricket forum and want to join a forum have a look at mine and perhaps get involved?



Check out my other blog here - this is all about Leg-spin bowling and nothing else. Double click on the image below.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Cricket update


Nothing doing at the moment as I've got this issue with my arm which feels as though it'sa  rotator cuff. issue. Although having said that the symptoms are different to the previous RC episode in that the area that is affected this time round is my Deltoid muscle. When bowling with any real effort, this twinges and becomes sore and later on - usually in the mornings, there's the sensation that the area is weak making it feel as though initially it's difficult to raise my arm at a 90 degree angle. Reading about it, the advice is that you rest it and don't repeat the actions (Bowling) that lead to the discomfort, so that's what I've been doing, so I've been turning down games in the last couple of weeks which I'm quite happy to be doing because my bowling with this injury has been awful.

With the bad bowling I've also decided that when I've recovered and my arm is back in action I'm going to look at the Top-Spinner and it's potential to be my stock ball. Three or so years ago I played four games in succession where I took loads of wickets 3 of the games there were 4 fers. In these games I bowled an off-stump line with straight balls (Flippers) and small leg breaks, but the key component was the fact that I bowled accurately. It seems that since I've been focusing on bowling with more spin I've lost out on the accuracy which is the way with Wrist-Spinning and bowling bigger versions of the Leg Break.

In the last match I played a girl bowled 11 or more overs, bowling very slow and she ended up with exceptionally good figures and a wicket. Talking to her trainer who was scoring with me, she said that the girl didn't spin the ball at all and all that she was doing was bowling line and length. The bowling was seemingly causing the bats real problems and yet it looked so innocious. I bowled later - turning the ball and came out with the opposite outcome. On reflection comparing the two approaches and having seen very similar approaches to the girl executed by older blokes and kids (Callum at Grays & Chadwell) over the last few years, the sensible thing seems to be to go back to a style of bowing similar to mine a few years ago. So as mentioned above the Top-Spinner seems to offer a solution. Because of the way that the ball is spun, there's increased potential to bowl more accurately and with  bowling directly at the stumps and the ball not turning, the batsmans approach then has to consider the 'You miss, I hit' potential? Variation then will come in speed, flight, increased spin (Dip) and natural variance e.g. turning very slightly. There's also the  fact that by only adjusting the wrist position a small bit you can increase the turn either way considerably and  it may be harder to pick the variation if you're bowling Top-Spinners consistently. In theory it all sounds like a plan that may work, so it's very frustrating to not be able to bowl at all at the moment and try this out. Saying that, I've bowled it a bit to various people leading up to my self imposed period of rest and it produced quite good results.

Ben + B&PCC v Horndon CC (U13's)

He's been bowling quite well, playing in the U13's and the U15's. The coaches say that as a potential all-rounder, there is some promise and he's been batting further up the order 6 and 7. He had one good partnership with Stevie Wyatt which he really enjoyed and vice versa, (Belhus U13's game) but he still is pretty negative about the idea that he could ever be half decent at it, but like the coaches, if the desire was there, I reckon he'd be okay at it with some coaching.

On the subject of other players in the team, there was a good match recently at The Rec Langdon Hills, just round the corner from us. Unfortunately my G9 was in for repairs at Ilesley camera repairs so I haven't captured any of the action on Video, which is a real shame. Stevie Wyatt was given his last chance to bowl during the aforementioned game against Belhus and he took 2 wickets consecutively and had his hat-trick ball dropped by Tim off of a dolly, so when it came to this game Stevie hadn't bowled for weeks and weeks. So out of nowhere the captain (Anthony Ayres)  threw the ball the Stevie denying one of the more regular bowlers the chance who was protesting in the field for being over-looked. But I think Stevie bowled one ropey ball first up and then the wickets began to tumble... Four in all - plus a run-out that he executed off his own bowling - so five wickets in total!

Stevie Wyatt checking the rules and his figures looking for a 5 fer. Turns out that the rules mean because he took a stumping this doesn't add to his 4 fer. But, nonetheless very good cricket all round by Stevie and a good case made across these two matches to give him a go at bowling in the future?

 This sequence above is Stevie Wyatt taking a catch off of his own bowling. Plenty of his balls were in the air creating opportunities, he could have come away with 6 wickets with a little more luck.
 Again another one in the air just over Connors head at Cover.
The B&PCC U13's leaving the pitch after a good win.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Joe Update

Joe's doing well at the moment, a couple of days ago with the prospects of me going back to work on Monday coming, and the start of the new term which means a new school and the full works, I was thinking I can't see him going without crutches still. But, one or two days makes a massive difference. A little while back Joe got back on his bike and yesterday and today we went for a short ride around the estate which got his heart pumping and having to use his leg in new ways. Today we went even further and I'll do the same again tomorrow pushing him further still, but today was a bit of a landmark day.

A couple of days ago during his twice daily physio drills I pointed out that the amount of weight he was putting on his bad leg and the duration the weight is on the bad leg makes it obvious that he could walk with a relatively normal action. At the moment he does this thing where he prevents the weight going onto his leg by limping - a sort of jerking action with his upper body and shoulder. He didn't think that a normal walking action or at least a reduction of the shoulder action in the limp would be possible. But, today the kids in our street were having a water fight, including Joe, meaning that he was moving around without giving any thought to how he was doing it and lo and behold he was walking around with a massively reduced limp!

Here's a clip of Joe walking around with no support and walking with relative ease as mentioned above... Click here.

Joe's Physio includes a range of different things and he's supposed to be doing them 2 or 3 times a day and generally we get two completed along with some general exercise... Bike riding, cricket or walking around. In the shot below Joe's using a Terra Band and has to pull one said hard so that it twists his foot and he rotates his ankle against the resistance of the band. He does this in both directions. There's also a variation where pulls the toes/foot back towards himself and he pushes his toes forwards and the opposite where another person using the bands pulls his foot towards them and he has to pull against the resistance.
Another issue that was mentioned earlier is his scars which are pretty damn big not surprising when you consider the damage to his leg in the early days. His leg as you can see is pretty dented as you can see here...

This is the outside of the leg with the impact wound, this isn't particularly dented and isn't that bad, I reckon in the longer term this'll clear up nicely and will leave minimal evidence of ever being damaged.

This is the inside of his leg. The upper scar is the exit wound where the bone came through the leg and the lower would is 'The hole' where the skin split due to the leg bending so much before snapping. In different light these look far worse - in this diffuse 'Wrap around' it doesn't look that bad. Joe uses Bio Oil to massage into his leg and he's doing this twice a day at the moment, he wont let us do it as he says it feels horrible and we have no idea of how much the scar can be massaged without feeling 'Horrible', he seems to be doing it quite well and he's on board with the need to do it and gets on with it himself and when you prompt him to do so. I'm getting him to get his leg up high still when he's resting and we've also started to re-introduce the physio drill that looked as though was causing the leg to bend at the break.

Here he is applying the oil to his leg and massaging the scars.

Frinton; There's been a few other things that show how well he's getting on. We've been to Frinton a couple of times which is a good Cricket beach... dense sand and nice widths between the Groynes to create boundaries and because of the shallow slope of the beach, the tide stays out for a good few hours to get a game in.

Similarly, as the beach is so shallow the water is shallow and it's ideal for kids to play in, so this was a perfect place for Joe to get back in the water and have a swim. He needed a bit of encouragement, but once in he loved it.

At this stage and this was only a couple of weeks ago, Joe was still using the crutches on longer walks e.g. down to the waters edge.

Joe and me in the sea, which was surprisingly warm!

Ben and Joe on the beach at Frinton.

This week along with the cycling and the water pistols Joe's even been trying to get in on the Pig in the middle/basket ball games and we've been to Basildon swimming pool and done lane swimming. On that front, this was the first time I'd been to the new pool and it's got nothing on the old pool. There's nothing there and it's dull. The depth of the water is almost the same across both the shallow and deep pool. Deep- that's a joke, the old pool was fun, we used to dive down to the bottom of the 12'6" pool and retrieve stuff from the bottom all of which makes you a far better and confident swimmer and is FUN. The old pool in that same deep section - you were allowed to dive - again more fun and of course the old pool had a flume albeit old, but at least it had one and again that was fun. The Basildon Sporting village pool is dull, dull, dull. Jesus! think back to the 70's when I was a kid and the fun we used to have at Blackshots pool in Grays, they had massive diving boards, rigid ones and spring boards - 4 different boards, maybe if these were still in place, some kid may have got the Gold and Silver alongside that Tom Daley bloke? The skills we learned in the Blackshots pool set us up for all the fun we had tombstoning off the top of the bridges down at the Ferry Landing stage at Tilbury and later on diving off of Eagles Beak at Aire Point in Cornwall into the little pool below when the surf was flat.

Here's another landmark - me taking the British Red Cross wheelchair back. I wont be missing this thing, I reckon as many people injure their backs getting the things in and out of their cars! Having said that we'd have been stuffed without it in the early days, so thanks to the British Red Cross and the free loan of the chair. We've had it for the best part of 4 months and we made a donation of £40 for the use of it, which I've been told since was a BIG donation for such a thing.

Whereas I was sceptical about the prospect of Joe walking un-aided by the time he went back to school on the 4th Sept, having seen the leaps and bounds that he makes in short 48 hour periods I'm a lot more optimistic. The only potential lapse is the coming week when he's going to be at his Gran and Granddads. Hopefully they'll ensure he does the physio and they'll make sure he remains active. If they do he should be okay. One thing that did happen yesterday which was a bit mean was, when he was playing with the water pistols initially he didn't have any and all the kids rounded on him because they realised that he couldn't chase them and despite his protestations, they kept drenching him. Over the months, Joe's coped with this all really well and has kept a really outwardly optimistic persona, but deep down he's probably frustrated by the fact that when Ben says "Right, we're doing this", and he and all his mates who are also Joe's mates just disappear and he can't go. But, he never complains or whinges and just within himself deals with it, but this event upset him and brought him to tears and rage. Eventually after he calmed down he said that he finds it really frustrating, that he can't chase the other kids or defend himself. Thinking about it I remembered that when Ben started at his new school, he went through a phase where other less socialised kids, felt compelled to establish their positions in a perceived pecking order, as if they were wild dogs and Ben who's generally unassuming and would be beneath most people's radar having to stand up to these kids and put them in their place. He went on in the end to stick up for other small kids that were being picked on and victimised and since then he's had no trouble. I'm now worried slightly that in that 'Pack mentality' situations, Joe's not going to fare so well, despite the fact that he'll probably be one of the bigger and potentially more confident of the kids. I suppose we'll just have to keep our fingers crossed and hope that kind of stuff doesn't happen and that he'll be able to ride this vulnerable phase through to next spring without any incidents of that nature.


The next fracture clinic (Xray) appointment has been cancelled and put back further and is now during the new school term on the 6th Sept. The Physio date we had to cancel and has been re-scheduled for a date later in August because he'll be in Derby with his Grandparents.

Overall though everything is going well.

Check out my other blog here - this is all about Leg-spin bowling and nothing else. Double click on the image below.

Thursday, August 02, 2012

B&PCC v Wickford U13's

This is yet to happen (6pm today)

Anthony Ayres, Frank Farrington Wrist Spinner, Stevie Wyatt, Mitchell McLeod, Kieran Barbero, Charlie Blerkhom (U11's), Harry Davie, Ben Thompson, Alfie Davie (U11's), Mark Broadhurst and Sam Good (U11's).

With 3 under 11's in the team this was a depleted side and we lost, here's the official details - http://basildoncricket.hitscricket.com/scorecard/fixtureID_284603/Under-13-XI-v-Wickford-02-Aug-2012.aspx

The batting didn't set us up too well for the bowling, with one of the lower order batsmen going in early and probably going on to score his PB for the team, but being lower a lower order bloke the run rate was thwarted, singles weren't taken and the progress was slow. Once the bowling got going the main bowlers came up with the following...

Ben 2-1-1-0
Harry 4-0-28-0
Kieran 3-1-10-2
Frank 3-0-15-1
Mitchell 3-0-12-0

Our inning saw 57 runs helped along with 30 extras, with only 87 to chase it would have needed some very impressive bowling to get the win. Kieran Barbaro bowled very well again as did Ben - but without any wickets. But the end result was inevitable.

Joe progress - Physio

So, we're now well into the Physio stage of Joes recovery. In addition he's getting out and about more and getting back to being active, outside loving sporty Joe.

Yesterday we had our 2nd Physio visit with Jill at Basildon & Thurrock hsopital and she was very pleased with the progress that Joe had made in the intervening week. She seemed surprised and pleased that we'd done the exercises that we'd been given three times a day with only 2 of the days only having 2 physio workouts.

The exercises so far have been about mobility improvement of the knee and the ankle and general strengthening of the thigh muscles from what I can make out