Ian Bell has signed a one-year contract extension with Warwickshire to the end of the 2021 season, extending his association with the club’s senior ranks to 23 years.
Former England batsman Bell, who turned 38 in April, is one of Warwickshire’s most successful players with 17,350 runs, including 38 centuries, across all formats. He is also the most capped England men’s cricketer to represent the county, having played 118 Tests and 161 one-day internationals.
Coventry-born Bell joined the Warwickshire set-up as a 10-year-old and progressed through the county age group system and academy. He made his First Class debut in 1999 and became a regular in the senior team in 2001, winning his county cap later that year.
Bell missed Warwickshire’s entire 2019 season through injury. In 2018, he was the leading run-scorer in division two of the County Championship with 1027 runs at an average of 54.05 and he also topped Birmingham Bears’ scoring in the Vitality Blast with 580 at 48.33, putting him third in the competitoin overall.
“I’ve been fortunate to be part of some fantastic Warwickshire sides that have won trophies across formats throughout my time with the club, and I firmly believe that we are building for another period of challenging for more titles,” Bell said.
“In the last couple of years we’ve seen some really promising young players come into the side and make an immediate impression. Part of my role now is to provide support to them as they have the potential to achieve a huge amount both with Warwickshire and England.”
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Paul Farbrace, Warwickshire’s Sport Director, said the signing meant that the club’s youngsters would continue to benefit from Bell’s vast knowledge and experience.
“It’s also important to remember that in the last season that Ian took to the field, he was one of the leading run scorers in both the Championship and the Blast,” Farbrace said. “He has still got a huge appetite for scoring runs and winning games of cricket, so we’re thrilled that he will continue to do this for Warwickshire.”
Warwickshire announced on Monday that its men’s squad would return to training this week in preparation for the delayed start to the 2020 county season on August 1. Details of the formats and fixture list will be revealed by the England & Wales Cricket Board in the coming weeks.