Despite his busy England career, Woakes still "feels very much part of the Bears family - and always will."
Woakes has signed a new deal binding him to the Bears until 2022 – and though international duty has frequently taken him away from the Edgbaston in recent years, the 30-year-old’s heart remains in Birmingham.
“I’ve been at Warwickshire since the age of ten and it’s where I’ll always want to be,” he said. “I’m delighted to have signed another contract. Hopefully there will be another one to come after that.
I know Farbs well from the England set-up and he is a great people-person with loads of knowledge and experience from working at the top level in both men’s and women’s cricket. It’s a great appointment.Chris Woakes
“Being away with England you do spend less time at home but that does not lessen the bond at all. I still feel very much part of the Bears family and always will. I love it when I can get back to Edgbaston and try to contribute as much as I can.
“It’s great that we are back in the championship First Division after the lads did so brilliantly to win the Division Two title last year. Division One is stronger for having Warwickshire in it. A club like Warwickshire should be up there challenging for every trophy and I’m sure that’s what we will be aiming to do this year.
“I think Paul Farbrace coming in as sport director has excited everyone. I know Farbs well from the England set-up and he is a great people-person with loads of knowledge and experience from working at the top level in both men’s and women’s cricket. It’s a great appointment.”
Woakes’s input for the Bears in 2019 will inevitably be restricted by England calls during a summer which brings the ICC World Cup and The Ashes. But he would love to also be involved with his county as much as possible and, as he continues his recovery from a knee injury, is aiming to feature in some early-season Royal London Cup games.
“The first championship game will probably come a bit too early,” he said. “But the first 50-over match, on April 19, is my target and hopefully I will be able to play a few more after that.
“Then beyond that we’ll see what the season brings. With the World Cup and Ashes, this will be England’s biggest season for a long time, with a chance to achieve something really special for the country, so I would love to be involved in that. I’ve just got to put in some good performances early in the season and try to cement my place in the squad.”