Hello Bears fans - I hope you are all keeping safe and well.

Over here in Aus, the Big Bash has reached its business end – the knockout stage – and I’m delighted to say the Strikers are still involved. I’m writing this in Brisbane ahead of our play-off game against the Heat at the Gabba tomorrow.

In the end it was very tight, but we snuck through! Our last two group games were back-to-back and we played really well to win the first one but then the second was rain-affected and we lost which meant a tense wait for other results. Luckily, they went our way.

Having qualified in fifth place, we have the toughest route from here and have to win four games to lift the trophy. If we beat the Heat, we will face Sydney Thunder in a quarter-final on Sunday and then would come a semi-final and final.

It’s knockout cricket now, all or nothing, and we have to find the consistency which has eluded us so far (won seven, lost seven) but, once you are in the knockout stage, anything is possible.

Danny Briggs

When I was at Hampshire, in 2010 we had to win our last group game to qualify and we did that then got on a roll and won the tournament. It was the same with the Bears in 2014 when, just like with the Strikers now, they were dependant on other results to qualify. All that matters is getting through. Do that and anything can happen!

I missed the last group game because I had a little bit of a tight hammy, but I am fit and good to go tomorrow and really looking forward to it. The Gabba is a fantastic ground and I think they have pre-sold 20,000 tickets so it will be a great occasion.

We beat the Heat twice in the group stage, so let’s hope we can make it three out of three. We know it will be a tough game because they will be desperate for revenge, but it is just so exciting to be involved in the knockout stage.

This is all such a brilliant experience for me. I probably under-estimated how much I would learn out here and how much knowledge I would gain. I must admit it has been a little bit hard, knowing what friends and family are going through back home, but I know I am so lucky to have this opportunity with the Strikers. Let’s see how far we can take it…bring on the Heat tomorrow!


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