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Joe Burns

'You never take a step back as an athlete' – Burns hopeful of a strong comeback

Australia news

Australia batsman Joe Burns, one of the notable absentees in Australia's 17-member squad for the upcoming Ashes series, hopes to get back to his best after battling a bout of post-viral fatigue.

Amidst most modern age players who boast agricultural and innovative strokeplay, Joe Burns, with his solid defence and an orthodox style is one of Australia's most technically correct batsmen. He has been a consistent performer in his short Test career for Australia and scored a match-winning 180 in their last Test against Sri Lanka earlier this year. However, the Queensland cricketer doesn't find himself in Australia's squad for the upcoming Ashes, after he was diagnosed with a 'fatigue disorder' last month.

"I got quite sick in October at the start of the season, putting down just to training and playing," Burns revealed. "As I got to the back end of the season, I was really struggling physically. I was basically going to training, wearing myself out and then going home and basically sleeping 14-15 hours a day. And again just putting it down in a long hard season.

"I had a few weeks off before going to Lancashire and in the first game for Lancs I was really struggling and basically feeling the exact same as I do in this season."

Burns had managed scores of 18 and 0 in Australia's intra-squad warm-up game in Southampton, but was still in contention for the final selection. Trevor Hohns, Chairman of Australia's selection committee conceded that post-viral fatigues had hurt the right-hander's chances.

"He [Burns] hasn't done anything wrong and we ask all of our players these days if they are left to just go back and bang the door down, a little bit like Matthew Wade has done," Hohns had said after Australia's squad was announced.

The 29-year-old thanked his county and Cricket Australia for their constant support during the difficult phase and is now determined put in the hard yards required for a strong comeback.

I guess as a lead athlete you never take a step back and kind of look at how your body's going. You're always trying to push it.

Joe Burns

"Fortunately the Lancashire doctor is really supportive," Burns continued. "We decided to take a break to figure out what was going on. I got home to see some specialists and figured out that my immune system is really struggling. Now I guess the support from everyone involved, Cricket Australia and Lancashire too, I guess give myself a few weeks and actually focus on recovering my body, trying to get my immune system better.

"I've been working with a lot of different doctors to a point where I can get back in the training, get through that and get back playing with the Australia A too now. I was really lucky that I had that support around me and I was at a point in my career where I just felt like I had to work harder and harder and push more and more.

"I guess as a lead athlete you never take a step back and kind of look at how your body's going. You're always trying to push it. So I'm more educated with the whole situation and in a better position to manage it well going forward," he concluded.

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