Yorkshire’s Liam Plunkett believes he has it easy going back to Durham to face his former team-mates in next week’s LV= County Championship Division One clash.
The 28-year-old opted to leave Durham last October, the county for whom he played since his early teens, after a difficult two seasons which saw him play only three Championship matches due to injury and loss of form.
It was widely accepted that the nine-time England Test bowler desperately needed a change of scene to re-ignite his career.
“You get boxers and UFC fighters who have to fight against their best mates, don’t they? I'm glad I don't have to do that. All I'm having to do is get them out!” he said.
“It's good competition and tough work on the field, but I'm sure I'll be having a bite to eat with some of them off it.
“It's where I played all my county years, and it should be good fun.
“It will be good to play against my old team-mates and friends, and I'm certainly up for it. I feel like I'm bowling nicely at the minute, so I'm excited.
“I've got some very fond memories, and I enjoyed the place. I won two Championship medals there and a one-day trophy. I also played for England at Chester-le-Street as well. But I knew it was the right time to move here to Yorkshire.”
Plunkett has made an encouraging start to his career at Headingley, even taking a career best 6-33 in the first-class match against Leeds-Bradford MCCU earlier this month.
Plunkett, who will almost certainly retain his place when Tim Bresnan returns to the side next week, puts his good form down to his back-to-basics approach to bowling, which has been encouraged by Jason Gillespie and Andrew Gale.
He added: “They've been great to me. They've just said 'try and hit the pitch as hard as you can'.
“When I feel good about myself, it's when I’m running in bowling at 90mph. It's just about getting that consistency I guess.”