Swann is solely concerned about representing England for as long as he can
England off-spinner Graeme Swann has revealed that he had to undergo elbow surgery recently in order to keep his international career alive.
Swann stated that he had more bone fragments removed from his elbow after having undergone the same procedure back in 2009, but some of the fragments could not be removed since they were deemed to be too close to his nerve.
The off-spinner found out that he would need surgery after visiting specialist, Dr Shawn O’Driscoll, in Minnesota.
“I said yesterday that I was trying to go through my whole career without needing surgery again, but the specialist came back and said something needed to be done,” Swann said. “So be it. It’s a huge year for English cricket and a huge year for me, so if this means taking a more active part in it then it’s something I have to do.”
Swann travelled to Rochester, Minnesota to have his surgery and he recently admitted that he may not be fully fit by the time the Ashes series gets underway in early July.
However, Swann noted that his elbow was nowhere near as bad as it had been in 2009, when “it was like a bomb had gone off in there.”
“In layman’s terms it needs a bit of a clean-out,” Swann said. “It doesn’t seem anywhere near as dire as last time around. I knew something wasn’t right [in Queenstown] as I couldn’t put an extra snap on the ball when I was bowling. I like to turn the ball a lot and I was only 70-80 percent fit.
“It all came about quite suddenly to be honest, I’ve struggled on and off for the last four years but it never really manifested itself into a dire predicament for me. But in Queenstown, just before the game, I started to feel an unusual pain that I hadn’t felt since before the last operation and it got worse during that game. I raised by fears with the doctor and Andy [Flower] and the scans showed there had been deterioration.”
Swann underwent successful surgery and is on the road to recovery, which involves his arm being in a CPM machine, which basically moves his arm around all day and night.
Swann admitted that the machine has been driving him “around the bend”.
“You just never know with surgery, do you?” Swann said. “And the fact you are having surgery means you have a pretty serious injury so, I was hoping I’d get through my playing days. I want to play as much a part in this year as possible.”
Some cricket pundits and former players believe Swann’s elbow issues continue to trouble him due to his heavy workload, both at the Test and limited overs level, but the off-spinner has not expressed any desire to retire from limited overs cricket.
“The whole point of the operation is that it will extend my career,” he said. “If it gives me a chance to keep playing for England for longer than I would have had then it’s great news.”