James Bracey delighted to end a centuries-long ‘up and down’ year in Australia

James Bracey has signed a roller coaster for 2021 by signing up for Britain’s first century on Australian land and with a new belief in the game itself.

At what was seen as a real prospect for this winter’s Ashes series, Bracey slipped down to surgery after having a soft start in the Test arena.

Raised to one side in early summer due to unavailability Jos Buttler Jonny Bairstow and Ben Foakes the hitter had a time against New Zealand with eight runs in three innings and a fearsome performance in gloves at Edgbaston.

It was an experience that could easily spell a crushing defeat for the 24-year-old Gloucestershire, but he showed his resilience after being called up for the Down Under tour with the England Lions.

He scored 113 in the second half of a four-day loss to Australia A, becoming the first British tourist to achieve the feat after Joe Root and Dawid Malan failed the first test.

“I’ll go home with a hundred more first places than I went out, I’ll take that,” he said.

“In a year with a lot of ups and downs, I really supported myself technically. Where my head is is probably the big thing. There was a lot to deal with, a lot of things were thrown at me.

I had a couple of bad games out of two that I didn’t want to. It’s just how sometimes a cookie crumbles

James Bracey

“That was my goal on this tour, let’s put some of the things I was doing into practice and these last few days have ended this. I’m really happy with how it’s gone and really happy with where my head is right now. Hopefully that will continue into the new year and new season where I can continue to score goals and start rebuilding, which has been the goal of the last few months. ”

Bracey admits that he questioned his own credentials after his baptism by fire but is now convinced he was just down at the worst possible time.

“I’ve had a couple of really bad games, that’s how I see it. Everyone has bad games,” he said.

“But I had a couple of bad games in two games that I didn’t want to be, you know? That’s just the way cookies sometimes fall apart. I know I’m not a bad player. I’m not a bad player, although I only averaged two. I’m not a bad goalkeeper even though I dropped a few balls.

“Personally, I am not satisfied with the way I have done it. And after all the build and time I’ve spent in that environment before, it feels like a bit of an antithesis. I recovered well after that. I had a good end to the season and this tops the year. Hopefully 2022 is a better year. ”

James Bracey holds England’s win over New Zealand (Mike Egerton/PA)

(PA Archive)

He has chosen not to add any Lions players to the Ashes senior squad, a decision Bracey has made in his stride as he tries to stay fit with his goals. .

“I wanted to go as far as I could, but I learned that sometimes that can be unhealthy,” he said.

“After what happened, it was good for me to relax. If I keep putting labels and goals on things and trying to get back into the Experimental pool it won’t be good for me or for my game.

“Obviously I have that desire and want to play test cricket again and hopefully it happens sooner rather than later, otherwise I will keep working and see where my career takes me. where.” James Bracey delighted to end a centuries-long ‘up and down’ year in Australia


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