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Jonesy’s Blog, 14th December

Wednesday 14th December 2011

It’s been a busy past few weeks for me sorting out things for my Benefit year. I’ve been here, there and everywhere for loads of dinners.

I went to the Variety Club dinner the other Sunday night where it’s five hundred guys in a room with different comedians doing a turn each, so that was a fun evening.

Keysey had his final Benefit lunch at the start of the month and then last week I was at the Lord’s Taverners Christmas dinner.

Then I had a meal at Lord’s with the PCA, along with a visit to the Castle Club in Rochester. The last Friday in November they invite the beneficiary and have a big sportsman’s dinner, so that was another good night out.

So, as you can see it has been a busy time with lots of meals and it won’t do me much good keeping my waistline down ahead of the new season!

Jen has been very tolerant of late as she hasn’t seen a lot of me, but once the Benefit year starts it should calm down a little bit. Now is the time we put all the hard work in, getting the website sorted out, putting together the brochures and the ties are now ready for sale.

Having the fixture list out means we can start to plot the calendar and we have got the usual London events and golf days, but I’m keen to make sure there are things for everyone to come to that are affordable like quiz nights with a difference.

There will also be a nice dinner, but at an affordable price, so I’d like to think all fans can make it to that one if they want.

Obviously we kick off the year with the Launch Lunch on January 19th and tickets are selling well for that. The last time I checked we had nearly sold out already.

I’ve also been busy with Sky doing some stuff in the studio. Some people say it looks easy, but when you have a car picking you up at 12:30am and you’ve only had a couple of house sleep it can prove to be a bit of a challenge staying awake!

Thankfully, Pakistan won the game on the fourth day, so the fifth scheduled day saw me catching up with some sleep.

It was great to see both Adam Ball and Daniel Bell-Drummond have agreed to extend their deals with the Club as they’re both exciting young prospects at the Club.

Adam has proved already he can play in First class cricket and has shown in Twenty 20 cricket that he will be one for the future, while DBD has shown that having those few games he can be one to watch in years to come.

Although he didn’t get the scores he wanted, he showed glimpses of what he will be about for Kent.

Next week I’ve got a three day coaching camp with former Kent spinner Rob Ferley and of course I will be spending some time in the gym to keep the Christmas cheer off.

I make sure I don’t miss out, but I won’t be doing much to excess and making sure that when I come back in January I will be back starting to hit some balls and get the cricket skills back.

In the New Year I’ll also be going to a place in Canterbury called Club Alpine to get my fitness levels up. It is run by a guy called Tim Dudgeon and he was an Olympian freestyle skier. He used to practice on a mates trampoline with his skis on and now he has come up with a machine that has been nine or ten years in the making that gets your fitness levels up and prepares you for the ski season.

There is no impact, so it’s good on the knees and Nimmo, our physio says there are plans to use it as a club after Christmas too.

As for Christmas day, it will be at home in the morning with Jen, Rhys and Tom, although Rhys has already broken into some presents as he wanted to open them!

He wandered into the kitchen the other morning with these toys and said “My birthday presents!”

So, we have to make sure they are hidden away now and there won’t be any presents under our tree until Christmas Eve!

We’re then planning on going over to have Christmas dinner at James (Tredwell) and Beth’s place as they have just moved to their new house. That means I don’t have to do any cooking and then there should be enough people there so I get to avoid all the washing up!

Whatever you are all up to for Christmas, have a good one and don’t overdo it!