Warwickshire: Bears have hard work ahead, says Dougie Brown

Warwickshire's players line up for their team picture at the pre-season photocall at Edgbaston, April 2015
Warwickshire are shooting at all three trophies again, after finishing in the top two in all three in 2014

Warwickshire director of cricket Dougie Brown says it is important to keep his players grounded as they prepare to launch their County Championship campaign against Hampshire on Sunday.

The Bears came close to total domination in 2014, finishing runners-up to Durham in the One-Day Cup and in the Championship to Yorkshire.

In the end, the T20 Blast was the only trophy that came to Birmingham.

"Expectation is a dangerous word," Brown told BBC Sport.

"Trying to improve in all formats will obviously be our aim and we'd love to win all three competitions, but a lot of other teams will be thinking the same. And, at the moment, we're equal last in every competition.

The Bears in 2015
County Championship: Runners-up
One-Day Cup: Runners-up
T20 Blast: Winners

"We have to focus on the here and now. Getting too far ahead of yourselves is the danger and there is a lot of hard work ahead."

The Bears start the new season without their three usual England absentees, Ian Bell and the rejuvenated Jonathan Trott, who are out in the Caribbean, and Chris Woakes, who was ruled out of the current West Indies tour because of a foot injury.

But Brown points out: "For the last six years or so, we've got used to being without Belly and Trotty and knowing that anything you get out of them is a bonus. The same pretty much applies now to Woakesy."

In any case, they have two fit-again fast bowlers from the fringe of the England team back in action, in Chris Wright and Boyd Rankin.

And Brown is more concerned about keeping them healthy and having a more injury-free season in 2015.

"We're always going to have injuries," he said. "But last year they came thick and fast and that's why we have the squad that we have. We managed last year off the field really well when there were a number of things that could have thrown us off course."

Warwickshire (from): V Chopra (capt), T R Ambrose (wk), I J Westwood, W T S Porterfield, L J Evans, S R Hain, R Clarke, Ateeq Javid, R A Jones, J S Patel, K R Barker, W B Rankin, C J C Wright.

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