Bears ace Olly Hannon-Dalby admits that it is "very tough" to be ruled out of the Bears' challenge for championship glory - but is determined to come back as strong as ever in 2022.

The seamer, who has led the Bears’ attack in recent seasons, again played his full part this year with 24 wickets before suffering a foot injury which has kept him out of the last four four-day games.

While the Bears advanced their title pursuit with a brilliant win at Yorkshire this week, Hannon-Dalby was consulting a specialist in London. It is deeply frustrating for the 2020 player-of-the-season, bit he aims to bounce back hard.

“It is very tough,” he said. “Chances to win the county championship don’t come along very often so it is frustrating because I can walk fine and do 99 per cent of things but can’t run and of course I need to run in to bowl.

“It is a wear and tear injury where the tendons on the bottom of my foot have become inflamed. It is quite common – quite a lot of marathon runners suffer from it. It’s something I have played through for a couple of seasons but this year it flared up again. I rested it to try to be fit for the last part of the championship season but then ran in to bowl in practice and the tendon ruptured. That put me out for the season for sure.

Olly Hannon-Dalby

“There might be a silver lining in that the specialists say the tear might prove to be a good thing as it might settle it all down, so we’ll just have to wait and see. Hopefully it is resolvable. If I have to play in a bit of discomfort in the future I’ll take that.”

Hannon-Dalby’s skills (he has taken 174 red-ball wickets at 27.80 for the Bears) in the team would have been hugely welcome in he closing weeks, but the other seamers, led by Liam Norwell and Craig Miles, have stepped up as needed.

“There have been some pitches with a bit in it for the seamers so they would have been nice to bowl on,” said OHD. “It certainly did a bit up in Yorkshire and I would love to have been there so is frustrating for me but great to see the way the boys have performed. That’s why you have a squad and the bowlers have done brilliantly.”

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