Source: Getty Images via ECB

Kate Cross working hard this winter

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England International Kate Cross talks through her training regime this winter…

We have had a relatively quiet winter. We have got only one tour and that is to New Zealand in February. It has been really nice to have some time to train and not have the pressure of preparing for a tour.  Last winter it was just tour after tour after tour and it was keeping yourself in the mind frame of competition. This winter we have been able to step back from that and really work on our skills and develop.

It is nice to have some time to get fit, I know that sounds a bit strange, but it’s purely just fitness and strength that we have been able to work hard at. That has been quite nice.  I’ve got this time to try and improve my skills. I have been trying to get a lot fitter and stronger to try and gain some extra pace.

I have been doing some technical work on that with my action. Hopefully, if selected for New Zealand, I will have a bit more pace by then.

We have been indoors for the last eight weeks so it can become quite tedious. We had a team building day at the Space Centre in Leicester.

It was really, really good fun. It was something completely different that we had never done before. We were all out of our comfort zones because we were not experts at space.  It was clever how they did it.  It was just a really good, fun day. We got to go up in space, I say that in inverted commas! Danni Wyatt did think we were actually going up!

We had another team building day last Thursday. Each coach had a couple of hours that were their section of the day.  We did a psychological test in the morning, something they do in the pit stops in Formula One. We were in the gym doing an ironman challenge and then we did some prep for New Zealand. We have started to really focus in on that now.

Then we did a Come Dine With Me challenge. We were all given a certain amount of money to spend and had to make a two-course meal. It was really good.  We just made far, far too much food. We catered for around 90 people in the end when there was only 30 of us there! It was really nice to do something different with the team and working together in different environments.