Will Davis has hopped on the wagon to boost his chances of staying on the field for Derbyshire this season.
The fast bowler turned 22 two weeks ago but any celebrations did not include alcohol as part of a new regime which he hopes will improve his all-round fitness.
Last season started well for Davis who bowled with genuine pace until an injury ruled him out for most of the summer.
“When I have played I’ve been quite pleased with what I’ve done but realise I’ve struggled to do it over a longer period of time due to a couple of injuries,” he said.
“So one of the aims for the season is to prove I can do it for longer and stay fit. I’ve been working hard in the winter and made a few lifestyle changes as well.
“I’m making sure I’m eating the right things and I’ve given up drink. I’ve read stories of footballers who’ve had injury problems and they’ve done it and been fine after that so hopefully that will help. It’s about trying to get the right things into my body.
“I’ve given up alcohol completely since we came back for pre-season at the start of November. It wasn’t like it was an issue or anything but it can affect your muscle recovery and things like that so I decided to cut it out if it’s going to help me stay on the park.
“If it keeps me on the pitch I’m not bothered about missing out on a couple of nights out and if I stay fit, I’ll probably have to stick to it!”
A product of Derbyshire’s academy, the Stafford-born paceman showed his potential in 2015 when he marked his first-class debut against the Australians by taking the wickets of Michael Clarke and Adam Voges.
His first five-wicket haul came the following year and when he took 13 wickets in the opening two County Championship matches of last season, he looked set for a big summer only for his body to breakdown.
Now Davis is ready to take his place alongside Hardus Viljoen, Duanne Olivier, Ravi Rampaul and Tony Palladino in what looks a formidable seam attack.
“I feel in good shape physically and in a good place so everything is going in the right direction for the season,” he said.
“I’ve had a couple of winters now being in and around the first team squad and hopefully I’ve learned from what I’ve done before. A couple of winters ago I perhaps went too heavy in the gym and got too big in the upper body and struggled to bowl.
“Last winter I perhaps went the opposite way and maybe didn’t do enough so it’s about learning from what I’ve done in the past and what works for me.
“Tony Palladino has had 10 to 15 years in the game and knows what works for him whereas as a youngster you don’t have that sort of experience to fall back on.
“Hopefully now I’m getting a better understanding of my body and what I need to do to stay on the pitch.”