BLACKBURN Rovers goalkeeper Paul Robinson admits he feels as sharp as he has been in years as he gets sets to make his 200th appearance for the club.
The 34-year-old is ready to bring up the double century at Wolves on Saturday and he will go into the clash with the Championship new boys on the back of two top-notch performances.
Robinson followed up his man-of-the-match display in the defeat at Norwich City – in which he made a save-of-the-season contender from Lewis Grabban – by playing a key role in Saturday’s home win over Bournemouth.
The former England number one puts his form down to the fact he has enjoyed a full pre-season for the first time since 2012.
And Robinson, who was sidelined throughout the summer of 2013 while he recovered from the blood clot on his lung which threatened his life, is now eyeing the possibility of extending his stay at Ewood Park into an eighth season.
“I am feeling great,” said Robinson, who has one year remaining on his Rovers contract.
“I’ve had my first full pre-season in about two years and I think I am reaping the rewards of that.
“I made a save at Norwich on Tuesday which I was very pleased with and I felt it in my performance on Saturday.
“I am starting to feel very sharp again.
“I’ve got another year here and I would like to stay here.
“But I have got to work hard, get my head down and keep doing what I’m doing.
“We’ll see what happens come the end of the season.”
The build up-to the 3-2 victory over Bournemouth – in which Robinson made one blinding stop to deny Yann Kermorgant – was overshadowed by Hull City’s pursuit of £12m-rated Rovers striker Jordan Rhodes.
Rhodes, who up until the morning of the match was not certain to play, has been praised for the professionalism he showed.
But Robinson also believes Rovers boss Gary Bowyer deserves credit for his handling of the situation.
“The manager was fantastic – he was completely honest with us,” said Robinson, who has been on the losing side just four times in the 25 league appearances he has made since making his comeback in January.
“When he gave us the team on Friday, he said ‘listen, this is no secret, there has been a bid made and it might happen or it might not – this is the team if Jordan is in it and this is the team if he is not’.
“It wasn’t two teams – we had a way of playing if Jordan was not. The person who was going to play instead of Jordan knew he was going to play.
“It was nice and refreshing. The manager told us, ‘it’s no secret, there is no point hiding behind doors. This is what will happen if he is playing and this is what will happen if he is not. He might be here, he might not. If he is here, he’s playing’.
“It was an absolutely brilliant way to do it. Absolutely fantastic.”
Rovers’ stance over Rhodes, meanwhile, remains the same – he is not for sale despite reports suggesting Hull were still confident of getting their man.
Rhodes was yesterday left out of the Scotland squad for their Euro 2016 qualifier away to world champions Germany on September 7.
But Rovers captain Grant Hanley was included in the squad.
Bowyer, meanwhile, today returns from his trip to India for a pre-planned meeting with Venky’s.