EX-AUSTRALIAN Test batsman Nic Maddinson, from Nowra, has returned to NSW cricket training after taking time out from the game.
The Blues left-hander had missed two Sheffield Shield games since the resumption of the competition following the KFC Big Bash League, opting to take a break from the game following a rollercoaster summer.
Maddinson was one of three players to make their Test debut in Adelaide in the day-night Test against South Africa, but was dropped three Tests later, then endured a tough run in the KFC Big Bash League.
His decision to take leave prompted discussions about player welfare and support for those who are dropped from national teams.
Maddinson had been seen at the SCG during the Blues Shield match against Queensland, and he turned up on Tuesday at Sydney's Drummoyne Oval along with other NSW squad members who didn't play in that high-scoring Shield draw that finished on Monday.
However steady rain in Sydney did not allow Maddinson to have a bat.
It's believed Maddinson has not set a timeframe for his return to competitive cricket.
The Blues' next Shield game, against Tasmania in Wollongong, starts on February 25.
Or Maddinson could make his return in Sydney's Premier cricket competition, while NSW have a four-day Futures League match against Western Australia in Perth starting next Monday.
NSW piled up 523 and 603 in their past two Shield innings, with opener Nick Larkin, the man most likely to make way for Maddinson, scoring 86 against the Bulls last weekend.
Maddinson, 25, made his Test debut against South Africa in Adelaide in late November.
He was dismissed for a duck and scored 1, 4 and 22 in innings against Pakistan before being dropped. He scored 75 runs in seven matches in the BBL.
In six Shield innings preceding his Test selection to open the 2016-17 season, Maddinson had scored 235 runs at 39.16, including a brilliant 116 on a turning SCG pitch against Western Australia.
Maddinson recently reflected on his Test matches and said he "did not feel out of place being in Test cricket".
"I don't know whether I was trying to convince myself I was ready or I actually believed it but I thought I was," Maddinson said.
"Still, you don't know until you're there and have to perform under that pressure.
"At the time I didn't feel out of place being in Test cricket.
"When I was batting I felt comfortable, I wasn't nervous or stressed about being up to the challenge.
"I thought I was adequate and had a few good opportunities to nail down a spot which I missed out so that was disappointing.
"I might not have had the couple of scores in the Shield game before leading up to that Test but I still felt like once I was there I could perform there."
Just a week ago, the powerful left-hander had vowed he would maintain the same mindset as he approached the second-half of the Shield season.
"I'm not going to change anything," Maddinson said last Monday.
"I'm just going to play the same way I was and still have the same mindset as what I did when I was playing those Tests.
"It's more about shot selection at times more so than changing my game and needing a new technique or whatever.
"I'm out there to score runs. If they come at a run-a-ball or come at striking at 30 (runs per 100 balls faced) it doesn't bother me.
"It's pretty cliché to say you want to win games for New South Wales and do well but that's the main goal.
"I want to score hundreds, as many as I can. I don't want to think about Test cricket.
"It is hard (getting dropped) but at the end of the day I've had my chance and couldn't grab so it's back to Shield cricket to score runs again."