Hamish Marshall has committed himself to Gloucestershire for the next two seasons after signing a new contract with the club.
He had already been offered a new deal, along with another out-of-contract batsman Chris Taylor, but those contracts were dependent on the club being granted planning permission for the re-development of the County Ground at Bristol. Despite this planning permission still not having been granted, Marshall has confirmed that he will be spending the next two years with Gloucestershire.
It is understood that the exact terms of his contract will depend on the outcome of the planning meeting scheduled for next month, but either way captain Alex Gidman will be able to call upon his services for 2012 and 2013.
Gloucestershire chief executive Tom Richardson explained, “We thought we were going to have to wait until the outcome of our planning application to agree terms with Hamish, but we have now found a way around that. He will be a Gloucestershire player next season whatever happens regarding the ground. He will sign a contract if we develop our facilities and a slightly different one if we don’t.
“Hamish has been extremely good at mentoring our young players and we see him continuing to play a key role in this as well as on the pitch as a senior player himself. We had to offer him alternative contracts because if we don’t get our ground development through our finances will be tighter.”
The situation regarding Chris Taylor is much less certain and it is thought unlikely that he will agree a new deal until the ground re-development gets the go-ahead.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the country, Leicestershire seem resigned to losing James Taylor to Nottinghamshire, and are already certain of the ‘retirement’ of Martin van Jaarsveld and the departure of Harry Gurney. To this end they have revealed some of the players that they are targeting as their replacements for next season.
These include released Kent fast bowler Robbie Joseph, who is believed to be undergoing rehabilitation work at Grace Road with a view to the county signing him as a replacement for Harry Gurney, and former Pakistani batsman Mohammad Yousuf.
Yousuf would be an unexpected coup for the county, who have a large Asian population, but his wish to play only four-day cricket is thought to be a sticking point.
When pressed to confirm potential signings for 2012, Leicestershire head coach Phil Whitticase would only say, “We have got feelers out there already and conversations are on-going. We have got a list of players who could be interesting so we are going to look at the position and see where we can take things further. This is starting the process; from there we get into negotiations and contracts.”
© Cricket World 2011