WINTER: News from Brownie Down Under19-Dec-2013
Sussex's wicketkeeper-batsman Ben Brown is another player amongst the ranks who is furthering his cricketing development away from Hove this winter. He is in Australia playing club cricket in Perth where he aims to get vital match experience ahead of next summer. Here he talks about his winter away so far....
Merry Christmas everyone! I hope you are all enjoying the festive period and wintering well. I am writing to you from Perth where I'm currently sat in the comfort of air conditioning, and perhaps more importantly, a safe distance from any gloating Australians!
It’s been a tough month over here for any English cricket fans, and especially tough I'd imagine for the English cricket team. I guess I have to congratulate Australia for a fine Ashes performance so far (ouch!) but wish England all the best for the rest of the series. I am especially hoping Matt Prior can turn his from around as we all know he is going through a tough period just lately. Matt is a class act and I'm sure you'll all agree he has everyone's full support at Sussex for the rest of the Ashes and beyond. Good luck to all the England team too; let's not write off an outstanding cricket team too soon.
My own cricket is going well here and I've been pleased with how I have started. I am playing for the team I played with last year, Melville Cricket Club, and have settled back in very quickly. We have a good group of lads here and a very healthy winning habit so it's great team to play for!
One of the main things to put right from last year was our one-day cricket both as a team and as individuals. I have been working on a couple of things in this area and been really pleased with some of my results, with the highlight being a score of 110 in one of our T20 matches recently. My scores have been fairly consistent so far and the team is winning so it's a happy camp at the moment!
I also managed to play a charity game with the legend Mushtaq Ahmed last week. He was in fine form with the ball and we managed to combine to get a stumping! He sends his best to all at Hove and asked me to tell Mark Robinson of his impressive form with the ball and indeed his athletic fielding!
Unfortunately winter time also represents lots of gym work so this is another area I've been focussing on (not quite as fun as trying to score runs) and I think I'm getting good results. Anyway we will soon find out on the dreaded fitness testing day in March!
Off the field I have an amazing lifestyle here and I'm very grateful to be able to live in a beautiful city with awesome weather through our winter. I'm trying (without much luck) to improve my golf and even a bit of tennis here and there. I'm not sure I'll be changing careers anytime soon however, it's fairly slow progress! The other great privilege of spending four months in Perth is the beaches. They are pretty spectacular here so afternoons are taken care of most days. Much like my golf my suntan is slow progress too!
Anyway I'm probably irritating most of you talking about fine weather and beaches so I'll get going! I'm off to club nets now so I will wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a happy New Year. Let's hope 2014 brings great success and some more trophies to Hove.
All the best