Wood set for return against South Wilts

Salisbury Journal: Chris Wood Chris Wood

HAMPSHIRE Academy all-rounder Chris Wood has pencilled in today’s ECB Southern Electric Premier League match against South Wilts on the Ageas Bowl Nursery Ground for his comeback.

The 23-year old, pictured right, has been side-lined following micro-fracture surgery on his left knee in January, writes Mike Vimpany.

He was troubled by wear-and-tear pain for much of the 2013 season but, following rehab, is getting ready to play again.

He said: “I’ve done a lot of gym work, building up the muscle strength. It sometimes involves two gym sessions a day, which can be quite tedious, but it will hopefully be worth it in the end.”

The county left-arm seamer isn’t the only one who wants to play – as neither South Wilts nor the Academy have got anywhere near getting a foot on the field in a Premier League match this season.

Both the South Wilts games against Ventnor and at Alton on Saturday have been washed out, while the Academy haven’t played since last month’s warm-up games.

“It’s been very frustrating,” said Bobby Parks, the former Hampshire wicketkeeper, who manages the Academy side.

“We’d been preparing nicely, with some encouraging performances in the warmup games – and then down came the rain and we haven’t got near a cricket field since.”

Jake Goodwin, the promising teenager from Swindon, will make his full Academy debut in the 50-over Ageas Bowl match.

Goodwin joined the Hampshire camp this winter.

South Wilts have selected a full-strength side for the 1pm match, with James Hibberd fit after a pre-season illness.

South Wilts: Abel, Morton, Mynott, Burl, Hayward, Riddle, Hibberd, Hawkins, Franklin, Warner, Sheppard.

  • South Wilts Division 3 match against Alton II was also rained off. Tom Pearce’s side host Fair Oak at Bemerton on Saturday (1pm).

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