"When you’re a cricketer you’re always thinking about it, whether you’re replaying old stuff or planning new stuff,” Schutt told cricket.com.au.
"But I hadn’t actually thought about bowling or missed it. I missed cricket, I missed fielding, but I didn’t miss bowling. It was also actually really nice to just not think about bowling.”
27-year-old Schutt was last seen in action when Australia defeated India in the final of the 2020 T20 World Cup at home in front of a packed MCG. Australia’s tour to South Africa in March was cancelled owing to the restrictions that were in place in light of the pandemic.
"Well… now I am bowling again, I have realised maybe I did miss it a bit. But at the time I thought it was a good decision and it was really good for my body because of the injuries I have had – they have all been from bowling. My body is in the best condition it’s been in for a long time."
Schutt, who has represented Australia in 130 internationals, said she found it difficult initially to get back to bowling as she took a longer break even as her South Australia team mates started pre-season training in June, but things fell into groove soon.
"I wanted to push it out as late as I could because I’ll never get that break again,” she said. "It was four months and I could not breathe the next day, I was that sore. I knew it was coming, but I forgot how bad it was. I was like ‘holy crap, I can’t move my right shoulder, I can’t take a deep breath, I can’t laugh, this is beyond sore, I am never stopping bowling again’.”
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"But it’s amazing how quickly you get used to it. I was nine out of ten sore the next day, I was done for, and I have only had three bowls since and I am fine now."
Schutt, who took her career-best figures of 4 for 18 during the T20 World Cup final, used the break to get herself fitter and rigorously followed the running program that was set for the off-season.
"I had been doing the running program that was set in the off-season so I thought I would be okay, but I didn’t know I was going to be PB(personal best) good,” said Schutt while talking about how her 2km trial run with South Australia in June went.
"I was quite afraid as I have never done the 2km time trial just off running fitness, so the fact I hadn’t bowled or played cricket in two months before it meant I didn’t know what time I would run. I thought if I could just run under nine minutes, I will be happy, but I got a PB of 8.22 which surprised everyone.”
"That was really good mentally and I think it’s made it easier for me to do all the other preseason training we have been going though. It’s not quite in the (top of the group) yet, seven more seconds and I will be at that benchmark,” she added. "We have another time trial in (August) so when I run that, I will be trying my hardest to get there. My first 2km when I first came into the squad, I was unfit and it was (above 10 minutes).”
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Schutt, who captains South Australia in domestic cricket, expressed her happiness about the extended pre-season she had with her South Australia team mates and lauded the training program.
"This is probably the only break like this we are going to get for a very long time. It has been bizarre to spend so much time with my team, but it’s really good to see how good our program is.”
"I have been saying for a while we have a really good program down in South Australia, but we just haven’t had the success to reflect it. Actually, being a part of it this pre-season, I can see it’s so true and we are very lucky.
"I would speak to (head coach) Luke Williams while I was on the road but it’s not the same and it’s been really nice. It gives me a real appreciation of the stuff the girls go through every year for pre-season, all the running in the rain and the freezing cold,” she concluded.
Australia is expected to return to international cricket when they play New Zealand in September at home.