Cricket news - Michael Neser bags Glamorgan contract for 2021 season

Neser's contract with Surrey was terminated earlier this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Neser's contract with Surrey was terminated earlier this year due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Australia bowling all-rounder Michael Neser has signed with Glamorgan for the 2021 season, in a deal that will see the 30-year-old play the County Championships as well as the One-Day Cup. Neser will link up with compatriot Marnus Labuschagne as the two overseas players in the Glamorgan roster.

Neser, who was to make his County cricket bow this year with Surrey, became the first overseas player to have his contract cancelled due to the Coronavirus pandemic. The Queensland seamer has made a fine start to his Sheffield shield campaign this year, claiming a fifer and scoring a century in a clash against Tasmania and drawing the attention of national team head coach Justin Langer.

Although Neser has been in the Australia squad, he is yet to earn his Baggy Green. He hopes a stint with Glamorgan could further his red-ball credentials, much like it did for Labuschagne last year. "I'm thrilled to sign for Glamorgan and play in Wales," he said. "I've played with a few guys who have played at Glamorgan - Charlie Hemphrey, Usman Khawaja, and especially Marnus - and they've had nothing but praise for the club, the way things are done, the culture at Sophia Gardens and the friendliness of all the staff and locals.

"I'm still desperate to play county cricket after my spell this year was cancelled, so when I heard Glamorgan were interested I didn't have to think twice. I'm keen to come over, showcase my skills, and do what I can to win games of cricket for Glamorgan. I've got those international ambitions, and I saw what playing for Glamorgan did for Marnus, and I'm hoping to do the same thing."

Marchant de Lange joins Somerset

An overseas slot at Glamorgan was opened for Neser because former South Africa quick Marchant de Lange left to join Somerset. De Lange had played four seasons at Glamorgan as a UK-registered player in line with his spousal visa. But he will not be allowed to play as a local player in the post-Brexit norms and thus had to terminate his arrangement with Glamorgan.

"The change in regulations has altered the category that he is able to play under, and it is unfortunate that Marchant is a victim of these changes," Glamorgan director of cricket Mark Wallace said. "He has always given the club 100% of his efforts and he's been an incredibly popular member of the side and a favourite of the staff around Sophia Gardens, so we wish him all the best."

De Lange, claimed 7 for 81 on Test debut against Sri Lanka in 2011-12, made a total of 12 appearances for South Africa across formats before moving to County Cricket in 2017. In four seasons with Glamorgan he took 85 first class wickets at 33.7 and famously hit a 62-ball 100 against Northamptonshire in this year's Bob Willis Trophy.

Rishi Patel leaves Essex for Leicestershire

Rishi Patel, a product of Essex's academy, has joined Leicestershire on a three-year deal. The 22-year-old had a brief loan spell with Leicester this season following which head coach Paul Nixon moved to sign the talented batsman on a permanent basis.

"Rishi is an exciting batsman who we are massively looking forward to working with again," Nixon said. "He has a huge amount of talent, which we saw during the loan spell here.

"Rishi adds further competition to a young, hungry squad and we look forward to him scoring lots of runs for us. We know that Rishi will continue to grow with us as a cricketer and he's all set for a big winter to settle in ahead of the 2021 season."

While Patel has a modest first-class average of 17, his eight centuries for the Second XI across 2018 and 2019 seasons underscores his potential. He was also picked in four games during Essex's 2019 championship-winning run but regular first XI opportunities became hard to come by in a settled team.

"It's been a pleasure working with Rishi and seeing another Academy graduate develop into the First Team squad," Essex coach Anthony McGrath said. "However, we have a very talented group of players at the club and it's been difficult to guarantee a regular place in the starting XI with the success we have enjoyed in recent seasons.

"Rishi enjoyed his loan spell at Leicestershire last season and it's an opportunity for him to play more cricket regularly in the next step of his career."