Ian Bell reflects with great pride on the feat of scoring two centuries in a match on his beloved home turf at Edgbaston.
Bell’s 106 and 115, both not out, this week formed the backbone of the Bears’ four-wicket win over Glamorgan, their fourth successive Specsavers County Championship victory which leaves them 24 points clear at the top of Division Two.
It was the second time in his career that Bell has scored two centuries in a match. The first, against Lancashire at Emirates Old Trafford in 2004, arrived in a purple patch of 155, 96 not out, 112, 181 and 121 which earned him his Test debut against West Indies.
Last year was a tough season for me but you have to take times like that on the chin, work hard and get back up and have another go.Ian Bell
It is a rare achievement and one which Bell is delighted to have now recorded at Edgbaston and, what’s more, in a win which reinforced Warwickshire’s commanding position at the top of the league.
“It was nice to score two centuries in a match, especially at Edgbaston, but the best thing was that it contributed to winning the game for Warwickshire,” he said.
“During the match there was some really good stuff from the team with the bowlers doing brilliantly to bowl Glamorgan out for an under par total which gave us a great chance to chase the target down on the final day.
“The most important thing is that we won the game but to have contributed to that with the bat is very nice. Some of the pitches we have played on this season have started well and deteriorated. The one for the Glamorgan game actually seemed to get better as the game went on.
“It seemed to spin a little bit less and there was probably a little bit less seam movement as well so the scores as the game went on got higher and higher.”
That being the case, it transpired to be a good toss to lose for the Warwickshire, Glamorgan having chosen to bat in the expectation that the pitch would turn later on. Not for the first time this season, a match that was evenly-fought for a long time was seized by the Bears on the final day.
This time, one of the decisive factors was Bell’s batting. In total in the match he was at the crease for more than ten hours and scored 221 runs from 412 balls, none of which got him out.
“Last year was a tough season for me but you have to take times like that on the chin, work hard and get back up and have another go,” he said. “I worked really hard in the winter and have felt pretty good this season so it’s nice to get the outcomes you are striving for.”