Blackpool’s own Lancashire star Steven Croft’s exclusive weekly Gazette column...
IT was great to see Jimmy Anderson this week and my first words were to congratulate him on the winter he had.
I thought you could see in the World Cup, though, that he needed a break.
He has been England’s leading bowler all winter and has performed brilliantly, but because of the schedule he’d had about one week off in four months.
When it came to the World Cup there were probably a few signs of fatigue.
But in training the other day, Jimmy was back after a proper break, and he looked refreshed and ready to go again.
He was talking about the Ashes win and it was clear he absolutely loved it ... though who wouldn’t?
I was as delighted as anybody we beat the Aussies, though it did disrupt my sleep pattern.
There were a few late nights and that’s not often the case with me. I like watching 20/20s on the box but the Tests drag on a bit, and as a cricketer you prefer to be playing rather than watching.
However, you have to watch the Ashes and the way it panned out was terrific.
My aim is to be in the England one-day team soon. Lancashire play their first one-day match of the season on Sunday against the Unicorns in the Clydesdale Bank 40 at Old Trafford.
I finished leading run scorer in the one-day side last season and I need to keep that kind of form going to get in the England team.
I hear Kevin Pietersen is interested in becoming one-day skipper again if Andrew Strauss decides to steps down.
I think having different captains for all three forms of the game would work.
Now the fixture list is so clogged, and the game is quicker and more challenging, it is very difficult for the same person to be fit and fresh enough to captain all three sides.
I think England have been going the right way by picking specialist one-day players.
As England found out over the winter, it isn’t easy going straight from Test cricket to the one-day game and being successful.
I think you need to mix it up a bit and keep everyone fresh, and it’s difficult to do that when you have the same players travelling around all summer and winter.
INTERVIEW: STEVE CANAVAN