West Indies skipper Jason Holder on Friday joined the Northamptonshire County Cricket Club (NCCC) for the upcoming Specsaver County Championship and Royal London One Day Cup campaigns.
Holder will arrive at the County Ground ahead of the start of the season and will be available for the first two Specsavers County Championship matches against Middlesex and Glamorgan, as well as the opening half-dozen Royal London One Day Cup matches.
The 27-year-old expressed delight over the development and said that he is looking forward to get experience of playing county cricket and test himself in different conditions. Holder further hoped that the same would provide him with an opportunity to get accustomed to the English conditions ahead of the World Cup tournament.
"England is somewhere I've wanted to play for a long time and I'm looking forward to the experience of county cricket and testing myself in the different conditions. Northamptonshire has a reputation of being a good club to be a part of, with a tight-knit squad and coaches who want to get the best out of their players," NCCC official website quoted Holder, as saying.
"I'm hopeful from a personal point that it will provide me a good opportunity of acclimatizing to English conditions and getting some time in the middle ahead of the World Cup in England and I'm grateful to Northamptonshire for the opportunity which I am really looking forward to," he added.
NCCC head coach David Ripley welcomed Holder into the side and hoped that his "match-winning" skills would prove useful for them
"Our discussions with Jason have been on-going for some weeks now. Jason is one of the world's top players and it will be great to have him as part of our squad during a period of the season where we will have both Specsavers County Championship and Royal London One-Day Cup matches," Ripley said.
"He is a quality bowler, match-winning batsman, catches well at slip and his leadership experience will also be important, supporting and working with Alex Wakely and our other senior players," he added.
Holder's five wickets haul in the Antigua Test against England lifted him four places to a career-best sixth position in the Test rankings after the Windies scored an impressive 10-wicket win over England to take an unbeatable 2-0 lead in the three-match series.
Recently, Holder became the first Caribbean player since ICC Cricket Hall of Famer Sir Gary Sobers to top the list of Test all-rounders and added another feather to his cap by reaching a tally of 778 rating points, the highest by any Windies bowler since the retirement of Courtney Walsh in 2001.
Holder has played a total of 37 Tests and has scored 1,783 runs at an average of 33.64, and taken 93 wickets at 27.69. In ODIs, he has scored 1423 runs with an average of 26.85 and scalped 112 wickets at 33.05.
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