Essex paceman Jamie Porter is confident he can return to his best form this summer, having taken 409 first-class wickets during his career. The 29-year-old endured an injury-plagued 2019, appearing in just eight County Championship matches and taking only 19 wickets. Porter credits his new fitness regime for getting him back in condition to bring his A-game to the pitch.
“Last year was a mental test,” Porter shared with BBC Essex Sports. “My bowling depends on me playing lots of matches; when I’m stop-start it’s incredibly hard. Even basic household tasks in pain was hard, so I imagine I would have been tough to be around. But my fire to perform is burning brighter than ever and I can’t wait to show everyone what I’m capable of.”
During the off-season, Porter had the privilege of being coached by Bowsing Coach Mick Lewis at Cricket Victoria in Australia. This enabled him to prepare for the summer as best he can and create a strong bond with Lewis. “I feel like I’ve had the best preparation in the last five to six years,” said Porter. “Micky helped me a lot, and the approach has enabled me to feel ready for the start of the season.”
Last season, Essex finished fourth in the County Championship; Ben Allison and Shane Snater were two of the main bowler’s carrying the load. Porter is proud of them and prepares to join them in taking the team’s performance even higher. “It’s tough to watch others take the new ball,” he admits, “but also incredibly rewarding to see them taking on a more senior role.”
Given that Essex is in its 39th season, it has become a cornerstone in the English county cricket landscape. Their legacy of success has been cemented over the decades and the team has picked up an impressive 8 County Championships. Porter is looking to add to the impressive history they have already had, by bringing their game to the next level this season.
Jamie Porter is a great example of hard work and resilience meeting with success. He has worked hard to put himself in a position where he can take full advantage of his opportunities, and it will be interesting to see how successful he can be for Essex this season.