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Essex sign Peter Siddle on short-term deal

Peter Siddle last played a Test match in November 2016
Peter Siddle last played a Test match in November 2016

Essex have confirmed the signing of Australia fast bowler Peter Siddle on a short-term contract ahead of the 2018 County Championship.

Siddle, who has picked 211 wickets for the baggy green side from 62 Tests will be available for the first five games of the season.

The 33-year-old was an integral member of the Australian pace attack between 2008 and 2016 and also went on to claim a hat-trick during the 2010-11 Ashes series. However, injuries did hamper his progress with the national team and with his pace going down, the selectors turned their focus on youngsters.

"I've enjoyed my previous experiences of county cricket and can't wait to get under way at Chelmsford," Siddle told Essex's official website.

"I have heard very good things about the club and the quality of the playing squad and look forward to contributing strongly towards the title defence during the first few weeks of the season."

Meanwhile, Essex coach Anthony McGrath is confident that Siddle will inspire the younger bowlers in the side during his stint with the Chelmsford unit.

"Peter is someone with proven quality at the highest level. He is vastly experienced and is a player who won't just deliver on the pitch but will help our younger bowlers as well.

"Australia coach Darren Lehmann spoke glowingly about him as a person and a bowler when I spoke to him recently, so we are looking forward to him joining us and making a real impact in the opening weeks of the season."

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