Wednesday 15 August 2007 

Napier Agrees New Essex Deal

All-rounder Graham Napier has signed a two-year contract extension with Essex that will keep him at the County until the end of the 2009 season.

The 27-year-old has found himself back in the first-team on a regular basis this season after suffering with injury problems in recent years.

Napier’s 2007 highlight with the bat so far is a first Championship century at Chelmsford (125 off 101 balls against Nottinghamshire in July) on his way to compiling 290 runs @ 72.50.

Meanwhile, the Colchester-born player’s 11 wickets @ 25.18 in the Friends Provident Trophy has been his most impressive performance with the ball.

Napier told the Essex CCC website (www.essexcricket.org.uk):

“I am pleased to have committed myself to two more years at Essex and am looking forward to progressing my career during this new era at Essex with Mark Pettini as Captain and Paul Grayson as First-Team Coach.

“The previous couple of years have been hard sitting on the sidelines (due to injury problems) but so far this season, without tempting fate, everything has been going well with no fitness worries. As a result my form is also starting to show through as well.

“Over the course of my next contract I want Essex to get back to where we have been in previous seasons.”

Essex First-Team Coach Paul Grayson told the Essex CCC website:

“Graham was out of contract at the end of the year so I’m glad we’ve sorted out his future. He’s been here for a number of years and is an Essex lad so we hope he will continue to do well.

“Graham has done particularly well in one-day cricket but we’d like to see him kick on in the Championship where he’s done well with the bat but needs a few more wickets.”

Essex Chief Executive David East told the Essex CCC website:

“We’ve been working to agree terms with Graham for some time and are delighted that he has decided to commit himself for another two years. Graham is one of our own who has come through the system, which we are very proud of, and he’s put in some very good performances – especially in one-day cricket.”

© Essex CCC