While his Perth Scorchers team-mates were partying hard during the Champions League last October, Ryan Duffield was spending extra hours in various hotel gyms throughout South Africa.
And as other pacemen were preferred in WA's campaigns this summer, Duffield kept plugging away in the gym and the back blocks of club cricket.
The left-armer may have produced the best debut season by any WA bowler - 33 wickets in 2010-11 - but he had since gained so much weight that he had lost the confidence of the team management.
There was little glamour and no glory in his early-morning gym sessions, but gradually the kilograms started to go, 15 at last weigh-in, and the Melville wickets, 33, started to pile up.
Duffield's case for inclusion has been building steadily over the past month and was finally answered yesterday when he barged his way into the Warriors attack at the WACA Ground.
WA and Duffield's rewards were instant, though his work with the bat today may prove even more valuable than his 3-61 after WA slumped to 6-54 in reply to Tasmania's 211.
"What doesn't kill you makes you stronger," Duffield said of his two-year ordeal to be selected.
"I just have to keep grinding it out and it's a no-brainer that the fitter I get the more chance I have of playing.
"Last year was frustrating and disappointing and I didn't do myself any favours, but this year I steeled myself to fight my way back.
"It has taken me most of the season to do so, but thanks to (fitness trainer) Steve Smith and JL (coach Justin Langer) for having faith in me."
Duffield was sent in as nightwatchman and helped Sam Whiteman survive after Tasmania's battle-hardened and ambitious pacemen took full advantage of the seam-friendly conditions to wreck a callow WA top order.
Five of WA's top seven have first-class averages in the 20s and that lack of experience and scoring power was exposed against a versatile attack capable of annexing another Sheffield Shield title.Duffield trapped openers Mark Cosgrove and Ben Dunk in his opening spell, during which he bowled 38 consecutive dot balls, and later added the prize wicket of Tigers captain George Bailey.
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