Trent Copeland jetted off to Glasgow this morning to support his wife, Australian netballer Kim Green, at the Commonwealth Games. However, he will not be letting his preparations for the 2014/15 summer slip while he is away.
Copeland is one of 10 fast bowlers in the NSW Blues squad for next season and it is a very impressive roster.
Josh Lalor also has plenty of experience at the domestic level while rookies Harry Conway and Ben Dwarshuis are starting to make their way in the Futures League and Second XI.
There is healthy competition amongst the quicks but first and foremost, they all support one another.
“There will always be that bad spell here or there and in those lonely moments when you feel like you are not contributing to your team, First Class cricket can be very cut-throat. It can hang you out to dry if you have a couple of bad days but we are all there for each other and I think that was the best thing about our Shield success last season,” he explained.
“There are a lot of guys who have ‘been there and done that’ and I think it makes a big difference to the younger blokes who can bounce ideas off us and ask questions. I feel like I am almost the grandpa of the group in the sense that I’ve experienced a little bit, but I am always there to help the younger guys and it is part of my job,” he added.
That said, Copeland isn’t planning on giving up his spot in the NSW Blues side easily and he is doing everything he can to make sure he is one of the first picked next summer, even while he is away.
While he’s in the United Kingdom, Copeland will be spending time at Northamptonshire, the county he represented last year. While there he’ll be doing some net bowling in addition to completing his pre-season fitness regime.
“It is about ticking the boxes and doing the right thing while I am away. It is important that when I don’t have (NSW Blues Strength and Conditioning Coach) Paul Chapman in my ear that I am able to motivate myself.”
Copeland has also made some valuable contributions with the bat over the last couple of seasons and he’s looking to develop this skill further.
In 2012/13 he scored 382 runs at 34.73, including his first century, and while his returns last summer were a little more modest, he did make an important half-century against Tasmania in Hobart while his patient 35 in the Shield Final helped set up NSW’s mammoth first innings.
“If the selectors are at the table thinking about picking me or someone else I want to have the runs on the board, and my slips catching, to make sure I am one of the first players on the team sheet.
“I am making batting a real focus during this pre-season and I want to take it to another level. My goal is to get back to either the seven or eight spot and really make some solid contributions, and that’s big fifties under pressure, then hundreds when I am at that point. It is not just about contributing, it is about being a batter in that lower order.”