Miller hungry to get back between the sticks

By Ian Burnett

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

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LONDON, England — National goalkeeper Dwayne Miller has endured an agonising past few months.

Not only is he currently out of a professional contract, but he's working hard in the rehabilitation room to fully recover from not one, but two knee surgeries done in Sweden last Otober.

One had cartilage damage forcing the surgeon to go in and clean up under the knee cap, and the other knee had pieces of bones removed from it.

Now the 26-year-old goalkeeper, who hails from St Thomas and who was last contracted to Syrianska Football Club in Sweden, is hungry to regain his rightful place in the Reggae Boyz squad, as well as to continue with his professional career.

"I haven't played since last October, but I have been working hard doing rehabilitation and for the past month I have been doing some goalkeeper training with a third division club just to regain my fitness," offered Miller prior to his departure from the Reggae Boyz squad in Luzern, Switzerland last Friday night.

Miller stood as backup to the outstanding Andre Blake in Jamaica's most recent friendly internationals against Serbia in New Jersey, USA, last week Monday, and Switzerland, four days later.

Rehab is usually a 'bitter pill' for any recovering player, but Blake's heroics between the frame sunk even deeper into Miller's psyche, having long been seen as Donovan Ricketts' primary replacement.

"Mentally I'm hungry, wanting to get back in the mix on a professional level, to be in an environment and feel like a football player again," said the man who helped Syrianska to the Swedish Division One title in his first season in 2010.

He added: "I'm upbeat and hungry and seeing Andre Blake making my work (with Reggae Boyz) even harder right now with some good performances, so definitely I'll have to come back even stronger than before, so it's a good look going forward. The competition is strong, so that is good for the country."

Miller explained that his contract ended at the end of the season last year and though the club wanted to extend the deal, he wanted to explore other options, as now he's awaiting the FIFA transfer window, which opens in July.

Also, Miller is without an agent, something he is comfortable with at the moment.

"I'm basically on my own just trying to regain my fitness," he reiterated. "I don't want to tie up myself with any particular agent right now, so I'm hoping that if someone comes up with a good offer for me then we can sit and talk."

Though it might seem difficult, Miller remains positive "because there have been some talks, but you can't jump to any conclusions until something is finalised, but for now I'm just keeping my fingers crossed".

And he's willing to play outside Sweden if the right offer comes his way.

Regarding the Reggae Boyz, Miller was pleased with what he has seen from close-up over the past week. He is of the view that the present core is young and can only get better with more playing time.

But he wants this group to put the success of the 1998 class firmly behind them and chart a course of history on their own.

"Anything is possible and it's time for us to get past 1998 and make our own history," he declared.

"It's a new group and we had spirited performances over the past two games. There were some flaws, which we need to work on, but they will only make us stronger. Overall, there were some positives and I know this team can offer a lot more, but it is going to take time, and the more time we spend together, the more we gel together and become a better team," said the 1.91-metre former Harbour View goal tender, who was forced out of today's game against Egypt because he's not in possession of a UK visa.




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