County Cricket Round-Up - 20th December
Nottinghamshire have signed Australian opener Ed Cowan as their overseas player for the first part of the 2013 season. Cowan will be available for seven LV= County Championship matches and eight Clydesdale Bank 40 matches before he is expected to take his place in Australia’s Test side for the summer’s Ashes series.
The move to Nottinghamshire was first speculated upon on ESPNcricinfo around a week ago, despite Cowan initially being linked with his 2012 club Gloucestershire. Gloucestershire eventually cooled on the idea when it became clear Cowan would not be available for the entire season and they wouldn’t have been able to match Nottinghamshire’s financial offer in any case. Yesterday, they announced that Michael Klinger would be their overseas player next season and today Cowan’s move to Trent Bridge was confirmed.
"I was very keen to play some Division One cricket and I'm pleased to have the opportunity to do that with Nottinghamshire," Cowan said. "There are a lot of good players at the club and Trent Bridge is a great venue so I'm hoping to make a good contribution on and off the field."
Trent Bridge is also the venue for the first Ashes Test and Cowan’s move to play county cricket before an Ashes series mirrors that of former Australia opener, and likely Ashes number three, Phil Hughes’ in 2009. Hughes was successful in his stint for Middlesex on that occasion but was badly exposed against the shorter ball and was discarded by Australia before the series was completed. Cowan will hope that his pre-Ashes spell in count cricket proves considerably more beneficial.
Nottinghamshire are likely to go back to one of their regular overseas players, Adam Voges or David Hussey, to replace Cowan for the second half of the season, with Hussey looking the favourite at this stage.
Sussex have chosen former Hampshire commercial director Zac Toumazi to succeed Dave Brooks as their chief executive. Brooks announced that he would be stepping down earlier this year after four years in charge and was recently appointed to the Guernsey Cricket Board.
Toumazi has a financial background after spells working for Citigroup and Goldman Sachs, before he switched to cricket, firstly for six years with Surrey, and then with Hampshire from 2011.
He said of his decision to join Sussex: "I am very excited. I look forward to working with the entire team taking Sussex forward whilst preserving the values that make it so special."
Toumazi will inherit a club that is among the most solvent in the county game, thanks to a large legacy payment from former president Spen Cama, which was invested wisely by Brooks, much of it in redeveloping the County Ground at Hove.
Since leaving Sussex, Brooks has gone back to his old career in the food and leisure industry, as well as joining the GCB. His involvement in Guernsey cricket will further strengthen the relationship between them and Sussex CCC, which will see the island’s age groups participate in the Sussex Cricket Board Area programme from 2013 onwards. The two bodies already work closely together, with Sussex Academy Director, Keith Greenfield, helping several young Guernsey players to take part in the County Age Group programme.
Somerset all-rounder Peter Trego has extended his contract with the club until the end of the 2015 season. The 31 year-old first played for Somerset in 2000 and re-joined them in 2006 following spells as Kent and Middlesex.
In 2012, he enjoyed one of his best seasons to date and was named as the season’s FTI Most Valuable Player of the Year. In all competitions, he scored 927 runs at an average of 27.26 and took 67 wickets at 30.64.
Chairman of the Somerset cricket committee Vic Marks said, “We are delighted that Pete has signed a new contract with us. Since returning to his home county in 2006, he has been a major force in helping Somerset become one of the most competitive sides in cricket.
“Pete is a superb professional and his 100% commitment to Somerset has made him one of the most popular players among his team-mates and our members. There is no doubt in my mind that he will continue to make a magnificent contribution to Somerset in the years to come.”
Trego, a hard-hitting all-rounder, has spent recent winters travelling the world playing in the various Twenty20 leagues. Last winter, he played for Mashonaland Eagles in Zimbabwe and Sylhet Royals in Bangladesh, while this winter, he is currently playing for Central Districts in New Zealand’s HRV Cup and Plunket Shield.
Worcestershire have signed former Western Australia wicket-keeper Michael Johnson for the 2013 season. The 24 year-old is a dual passport holder and has previously represented Somerset, Hampshire and, last season, Kent second XIs. He played the last of his 10 first-class matches for Western Australia in November 2011, having debuted for them in 2009.
Johnson will provide competition for upcoming Worcestershire wicket-keeper Ben Cox, who didn’t exactly grab his chance at the end of 2012 when he replaced the retiring Ben Scott in the Pears line-up.
Worcestershire Director of Cricket, Steve Rhodes, summed up the attributes that Johnson will bring, saying, “Michael comes to New Road as a ready-made first-team player, having served his apprenticeship with Western Australia as a contracted player from a young age. At 24, he has plenty of years ahead of him. He also brings captaincy experience and run-scoring ability from playing cricket for the successful Scarborough CC in the Western Australia competition. I am looking forward with interest to the healthy scrap for the gloves with Ben.”
Somerset have appointed South African Dave Nosworthy as their new Director of Cricket. The 44 year-old played 29 times for Border and Norther Transvaal during his playing career and has since coached in South Africa and New Zealand. He will replace the outgoing Brian Rose, who stepped down at the end of the 202 season.
"I am absolutely delighted to be coming to Somerset along with my family," Nosworthy said. "The club has a proud tradition, is currently in great shape, and is clearly an exciting place to be. I personally am really looking forward to the challenges of building on the current strengths of the club, the many proud traditions, and the great work done by the many that have passed before me.
© Cricket World 2012
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