CHERRIES captain Tommy Elphick is targeting a regular run of games as he bids to produce his best form in the Championship.

Elphick, Daily Echo/Micky Cave player of the season during Cherries’ League One promotion campaign, returned to the starting line-up against Derby on Saturday.

The 26-year-old could be set to get an extended stint in Eddie Howe’s XI as fellow central defender Elliott Ward faces up to two months out with a calf problem.

With Steve Cook also an injury concern, Elphick will be in line to play in Cherries’ next Championship clash against former club Brighton.

And having been restricted to five starts and four substitute appearances in the league this season, Elphick is keen to find a rhythm.

He told the Daily Echo: “It is hard when you have been out of the team for so long. I have given myself a platform to hopefully get a regular run of games now and to improve.

“I am one of those players where coming in and out of the side doesn’t really get me at my best.

“I need to be playing week in, week out and, hopefully, this is the start of a run of games for me and I can get fitter, stronger and find that rhythm.”

Discussing the 1-0 loss against the Rams, Elphick added: “I thought they were a very good side. We played some good stuff at times but not for enough long periods.

“I just felt that Derby always had control over the game. When you are the home team, you want to control the game through possession and I did not think we did that.

“We are getting in some good positions and nearly turning them into goals and nearly keeping clean sheets. We just need that little rub of the green and a little bit of a confidence boost.”