Good morning Bears! I hope you are all well.

I am coming to the end of my fourth week out here in Bangladesh. Still very much loving my experience here.

Admittedly, it has been a tough week. On the field, I haven’t played a game since we last spoke. I was due to play in Dhaka, but unfortunately rain prevented any play and then missed out on selection in both games in Sylhet. On a positive note, we have qualified for the first Qualifier and are sitting pretty at the top of the BPL table on 13 points from nine games. We have one group game left before a qualifier against the second-placed team. The prize, a ticket straight to the BPL final.

Off the field it has been tough. Conditions in Sylhet were really testing, to be honest. The hotel was very poor in comparison to Chittagong and Dhaka. It definitely tested the character which is a positive I guess. In previous blogs I have touched on how lucky we are in the UK, and this week was certainly a reminder of that. Showering in murky water, sleeping on a rock hard bed and eating plenty of local food really tested that character!

Practice has been good, I’ve continued to work hard at a few technical things as well as keeping on top of things from a fitness perspective. Training on your own can be hard at times, so I’ve been taking full advantage of Hainy and locking in plenty of treadmill and gym sessions with him. We are pulling one another along! I never thought I would say it, but I actually miss smashing out the fitness with the boys back at Edgbaston. I touched base with Rhodesy yesterday, he said the guys are in great spirits, working hard and everything is building nicely towards the season.

The boys have been hitting the nets pretty hard back at Edgbaston by all accounts. They’ve also been doing some fielding work at Coventry City’s Alan Higgs indoor 4G facility. To be honest I’ve not heard how the fielding has been going, but I’ve had plenty of updates on the WhatsApp group as to who’s the best footballer. Rumour has it, Alex Davies has been running the show. He used to support Blackburn, but now has become an avid Man City fan, regularly attending their matches! I guess that would explain the improvement in his football over recent months. He was shocking during The Hundred with Southern Brave.

Just the seven weeks until the start of the county cricket season. I am sure you are all really looking forward to getting back to the ground and supporting us in the County Championship. Personally, I can’t wait to play some red ball cricket. It has been a while since I played a red ball match (July last summer). It is likely that I will start in the 2nd team.

We have some brilliant young players at Warwickshire and I’m excited to play with them. Hopefully I’ll be able to get plenty of overs under my belt, some time in the middle with the bat and help the younger players out where I can. I will be pretty old in comparison to most in that second team, so it’ll be a great opportunity to help the younger players, whilst developing my own game too.

The next time I speak to you, we will be another week closer and I hope we will be BPL champions. We have a big week, but (inshallah) we can come out on top. Thanks for all your messages of support again. When you are away from home it is always nice to get messages of support. So, thank you very much for that. Speak soon, YOU BEARSSSSSS. Jake.

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