Ben Cox has set his sights on replicating the form he demonstrated when Worcestershire were last in Division One of the County Championship two years ago when they return to the top flight next summer.
The County’s wicket-keeper batsman proved his worth against the elite with 778 runs at an average of 37.04 and he was Worcestershire’s second highest run-scorer behind Tom Fell who topped the 1,000 mark.
He also experienced an excellent season behind the stumps and his tally of 45 dismissals was only surpassed by Middlesex’s John Simpson and Sussex’s Ben Brown.
Assistant Coach Matt Mason recently hailed Cox as the best gloveman in the country and he will be going toe to toe in the top division with the likes of Ben Foakes and Alex Davies who have received international recognition.
Cox said: “Next year, I’ll be going head to head with Foaksey and Alex Davies. You are in the spotlight in Division One, you are playing against the best teams.
“I did well last time I was in Division One in 2015 and scored 700 odd runs.
“As long as I can replicate that year in 2015 come next season, then I will be very pleased with that.”
An indication of Cox’s growing maturity as a player was him winning the County’s Dick Lygon Award for 2017 for contributions on and off the field.
Cox – Worcestershire’s PCA representative in succession to Daryl Mitchell – admitted: “I didn’t see that coming to be honest.
“I just try to be myself as much as I can, make everyone else feel as comfortable as possible wherever that might be, at the crease or in the dressing room.
“In terms of my cricket, I was disappointed not to contribute much (with the bat) in red ball cricket at the start of the year.
“But I’m glad I chipped in towards the end with the bat. I know it wasn’t one of my most successful years in terms of run tallys (675 at 33.75).
“For me, it was an average year with the bat. It’s not where my standards are, or where they should be, but from having a poor start I rescued it quite well in the end.”