WORCESTERSHIRE captain Brett D'Oliveira is feeling "very positive" about his return to cricket after suffering a dislocated shoulder at the end of the 2023 season.

D’Oliveira, who last week signed a contract extension until the end of the 2027 season, confirmed he is back batting and now also able to do some bowling as part of the winter training programme at Malvern.

D’Oliveira defied the shoulder problem to play in the final three County Championship matches of the season and skipper Worcestershire to promotion, scoring a superb century against Yorkshire at Headingley.

It is still very positive. It is going to take a bit of time to get that confidence back, to still get the strength and power in the shoulder.

“But I’m back hitting cricket balls and batting on the machine and last week started going through some bowling, and I think the next layer of that is just upping the intensity of it all.

“The last sort of bit will be diving in the field, but I’m hoping when we go to Desert Springs that I will be ready to fully participate in everything. All is going well at the moment.

“I’ve got another check up to come with the surgeon but hopefully that is the last one that will be needed.

“All went well the latest scan and was healing properly and was going in the right direction.

“It’s a bit of a long process, but that’s why we tried to get through the back end of the season and then got things done in the off season. All is well.”

D'Oliveira is hopeful he will be able to play a full part in the March training camp at Desert Springs ahead of the County Championship season getting underway in April.