If ever there was a time for reflection then this is probably it.
As I write this piece from the hotel lobby at the Leonardo Basel Tel Aviv, I await a visit from the Team GB medics, hoping they can save my Maccabiah.
A freak injury has really tested my pain threshold and it appears that a cortisone injection is my only option to ensure I can get through Friday’s must-win game against Canada. I suffered the injury in our opening cricket match against South Africa. A rising delivery from Yoni Fingleson caught me flush on the elbow and was caught at second slip. The pain quickly subsided as the umpire pointed his finger towards the heavens following what one could describe as a half-hearted appeal.
It was only during the second game against India that I discovered just how much damage the blow had inflicted as I was unable to grip the bat properly, had no power in my top hand and any hyper extensions were agony.
It was with a heavy heart I told the skipper that I was unable to play in match three against Israel but, at the back of my mind, I was hoping that five days of physio, icing, anti-inflammatories and possibly more would have do the trick. I’d rather they chopped off my arm or bat one-handed than miss another game. In fact, it would be fair to say that one week in, the 19th Maccabiah Games hasn’t gone as planned for me or the boys, especially the batsmen.
Our brilliant win over South Africa paled into insignificance as we succumbed to India and Israel. After three games our batting simply hasn’t been good enough. We just haven’t scored enough runs or given our bowlers a chance.
It’s needed a couple of brilliant performances to help us compete. Benjamin Lederman and Marc Reingold were the heroes against South Africa while Mark Bott’s innings was the only highlight in match two. I hold up my hand up and say I haven’t been good enough either, but I’m determined to finish the competition strongly.
The wickets have been tricky and we felt we haven’t had the rub of the green but we’re certainly not feeling sorry for ourselves. It’s time for the talking and excuses to stop. We’ve lots wickets in clusters, with partnerships few and far between. Other teams have out runs on the board and we need to show better application at the crease.
I’m still confident we can turn things around and when we get home we’ll be able to look ourselves in the mirror and say we have it our best shot.