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Christmas in Australia

Posted in Domestic Cricket

The time has come for me to scribble down exactly what has been going on over the last month.

It is safe to say it has been a hectic but extremely enjoyable month.

The Flinders Ranges were the first stop this month. The trip was designed to test mental toughness and leadership and was a really good way to analyse yourself as an individual.

It consisted of a lot of walking up hills and mountains, sleeping under the stars without a tent, rationed food and no Facebook, Twitter or phone which was surprisingly refreshing.

I have never seen stars like it. It was incredible sleeping out in the open. The trip finished off at a homestead where we had an awesome BBQ and copious amounts of red wine. It was a very good vibe.

On the way back from the Flinders we stopped off at Jamestown and played a Twenty20 against some of the locals and coached about 120 kids from the area. The hospitality was amazing and thoroughly enjoyable from everyone’s point of view.

The Test match was the next stop for me - my club side had a bye so I went to see Australia vs South Africa at the Adelaide Oval. It was such a good day with some enthralling cricket.

The following week I was approached to play in an annual charity cricket match down on the Yorke Peninsula, about two and a half hours' drive from Adelaide.

Sam Billings

We had a brilliant time in the Flinders Ranges - it was an incredible experience sleeping out in the open under the stars

It's an utterly incredible place down there with unbelievable beaches. I was put up by one of the main farmers in the region and, again, the family were so hospitable and really made me feel at home. I got a chance one evening to go shooting Oz Style off the back of a 4x4. Being a country bumpkin myself I thoroughly enjoyed it and was in my element.

On the cricket front the results for my club, Port Adelaide, have been mixed.

We had a good Twenty20 win which I was happy to contribute 40 not out to see us home. We have played some really competitive cricket in the longer form but are just not getting the rub of the green at the moment.

From a personal point of view I have been training really well and felt good but have just not turned it into the big scores I’m looking for. My game feels as if its improving so all I can do is keep giving myself the best chance and it’ll come.

As always the fitness is as brutal as ever. It really is tough but the results from testing keeps improving which is always good.

Finally, while I’m sure it’s getting very Christmassy at home it certainly isn’t feeling at all like Christmas over here.

It's hotting up massively - we've have had a few 40-degree days which is a taster of what is to come.

Over the break I will head off to Melbourne for Christmas to meet my good friend in the Kent dressing room, Sam Northeast. We are then having a road trip up to Sydney for New Year’s Eve. I'm really looking forward to catching up with him. I can’t wait.

Until next time - Happy Christmas!