Apr 032014
Aussies join KP in Caribbean pay day

David Hussey would be all smiles after being picked up by Antigua Hawksbills. Picture Way

David Hussey would be all smiles after being picked up by Antigua Hawksbills. Picture Wayne Ludbey. Source: Wayne Ludbey / News Limited

THE Calypso carnage is about to get a whole lot crazier.

Kevin Pietersen was the star of the show but three Australians were also big winners at the player auction for the Caribbean Premier League on Friday.

The former England batsman, who is essentially a gun for hire these days after the England Cricket Board brought an end to his international career, was the first player sold in the draft.

He’ll be playing his cricket for St Lucia Zouks, earning a base salary of US$80,000 for a month’s work plus whatever slice of the $350,000 pie team management decides to give him.

Unfortunately for Pietersen he won’t be joined at St Lucia by Twitter buddy Chris Gayle, but he will have Australian veteran Brad Hodge, who played in the CPL last year, as a teammate.

Kevin Pietersen is a global gun for hire these days.

Kevin Pietersen is a global gun for hire these days. Source: AAP

After making a sensational comeback to Australia’s T20 side, culminating in his call-up for the ICC World T20, Hodge made a low-key retirement announcement via Twitter following a poor showing in Bangladesh. However, he’ll continue to play in domestic competitions around the world.

Another veteran batsman, Victoria’s David Hussey, was feeling like a lucky man after being picked up by Antigua Hawksbills. Former Australia coach Tim Neilsen is in charge of the side, while West Indies legend Sir Viv Richards holds a management role with the franchise.

Hussey will have a couple of familiar faces alongside him in the Hawksbills change room.

One of those will belong to Tasmanian bowler Ben Laughlin, who was also picked up by Antigua in the draft. Being a seventh-round selection means he’ll pocket at least US$15,000, while second-round pick Hussey will earn a cool US$70,000 for his efforts.

Brad Hodge already has experience playing in the Caribbean Premier League.

Brad Hodge already has experience playing in the Caribbean Premier League. Source: Getty Images

Another of the teammates will be West Indies all-rounder Marlon Samuels, best remembered in Australia for his infamous run-in with Shane Warne during the 2012-13 season of the Big Bash League.

Hussey was a member of the Melbourne Stars line-up that clearly held a strong dislike for Samuels, so it will be interesting to see how the pair fares as teammates.

The other Australian to have success in the auction was Western Australian veteran Adam Voges, who was picked up by the Jamaica Tallawahs — coached by his former Australia coach Mickey Arthur.

Voges will earn at least US$50,000 for the chance to play under Arthur and alongside the likes of West Indies superstar Chris Gayle and Sri Lankan legend Muttiah Muralitharan.

Mar 282014
Pietersen to play in Carribean Premier League

Last updated 11:08 29/03/2014

Jettisoned England batsman Kevin Pietersen has added another payday to his diary with the announcement he will play in the Caribbean Premier League in July and August after his commitments in India.

Pietersen, literally available to the highest bidder after being shunned by England, was picked up by the Delhi Daredevils in last month’s Indian Premier League (IPL) draft for 90 million rupees ($1.49 million).

The Caribbean Premier League (CPL) said in a statement on Friday that the South African-born former England captain would be a star attraction for franchises when their draft takes place in Jamaica on April 3.

It added that Pietersen had activated a secondment agreement in his contract with English county cricket team Surrey to ensure he was available.

The Caribbean tournament takes place in July and August, with the IPL running between April and June.

Pietersen said he was delighted to be involved: “As soon as I was approached, I knew it was something I wanted to take part in,” he said.

“I have fantastic memories of playing T20 cricket in the Caribbean – especially when we won the 2010 ICC World T20 tournament – so I can’t wait to play in front of the magnificent Caribbean fans who create a truly unique and thrilling atmosphere.”

CPL Chief executive Damien O’Donohoe said the 33-year-old right-hander’s involvement was a statement of intent for his series and “demonstrates just how far we have come in a short period of time

“He’s a born entertainer so the fans will love watching him play, and our younger players will get the opportunity to learn from his vast experience.”

Pietersen was released from his ECB (England and Wales Cricket Board) contract in February in the aftermath of a 5-0 test whitewash by Australia.

– Reuters

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Mar 282014
Pietersen In Caribbean Premier League Draft
Kevin Pietersen

Kevin Pietersen is expected to feature in this year’s Caribbean Premier League

© REUTERS / Action Images

Ex-England batsman Kevin Pietersen will be entered into the draft ahead of the 2014 Caribbean Premier League (CPL).

He will be available when the draft takes place on 3rd April, where the competing teams will finalise their squads for the competition, now in its second year.

Pietersen, released from his central contract by England earlier this year, will captain the Delhi Daredevils in the Indian Premier League in April, May and June – should they reach the final – and is already looking forward to taking part in the CPL.

“I’m delighted to be involved in this year’s Limacol Caribbean Premier League,” he said.

“As soon as I was approached, I knew it was something I wanted to take part in.

“I have fantastic memories of playing T20 cricket in the Caribbean – especially when we won the 2010 ICC World T20 tournament – so I can’t wait to play in front of the magnificent Caribbean fans who create a truly unique and thrilling atmosphere.”

Pietersen will be one of more than 200 players in the draft, which takes place in Jamaica, ahead of the tournament being played in July and August.

Last year, the Jamaica Tallawahs won the competition, beating the Guyana Amazon Warriors in the final.

© Cricket World 2014

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Mar 212014
World Twenty20: Ben Stokes undergoes surgery on wrist injury suffered while punching a locker that ruled him out of tournament

The 22-year-old Durham player punched a locker after being dismissed for a duck against West Indies earlier this month, forcing him to withdraw from his first global tournament.
While his team-mates carried on from the Caribbean to Bangladesh, he went…

Feb 192014
Openers, Neesham giving Hesson headaches

Coach Mike Hesson is bracing for some tough selection discussions around his opening pair and how to fit Jimmy Neesham into the 11 for New Zealand’s next test against the West Indies.

Some welcome and unwelcome selection headaches emerged from New Zealand’s memorable test summer at home; three wins, two draws and a brace of series victories over West Indies and India which moved them up to seventh on the rankings.

Their next assignment in whites is a three-test series in the spin-friendly Caribbean, starting in late May, where there should be at least one new opener.

Peter Fulton is a valued senior man and leader but can’t go on. Since his 61 in Dunedin in December, his eight subsequent test innings reaped 62 runs and a highest score of 13.

Hamish Rutherford hasn’t passed 50 in his past eight innings either, but is at least making starts. In his favour is the fact Hesson and general manager national selection, Bruce Edgar, are loyal and seem unlikely to make a double change at the top.

“Bruce and I will certainly sit down and discuss that. We know it’s the toughest job in the business, that’s why there’s a high turnover and both Peter and Hamish, although they didn’t score a huge volume of runs, still did some good things for us throughout the series. We’ll have to sit down and reflect on that,” Hesson said.

“There’s still plenty of domestic cricket to be played so we won’t be rushing to any decisions. It’s a tough job and we need to know that if we’re going to make change we’re making change to make the team stronger.”

That’s the question. Of the contenders, Tom Latham looks almost certain to come in for Fulton. The left-hander is rated highly and showed enough in the second innings at the Basin, batting 112 minutes for 29, that he has a solid defence and temperament to kick on.

Others in the mix are Aaron Redmond, who played the Dunedin test in the injured Kane Williamson’s absence, Martin Guptill, Jeet Raval, Daniel Flynn and Michael Papps. The latter is the Plunket Shield’s leading runscorer but has little traction with the national selectors, Raval is rated highly but isn’t banging the door down with big runs, and Guptill has been tried and failed as a test opener but could be in the test squad mix as batting backup.

“It’s a damn tough job and players can perform well domestically but the surfaces and sometimes the attacks at different times of year doesn’t make it easy to compare players,” Hesson said.

Neesham, meanwhile, seized his chance in the absence of legspinner Ish Sodhi with a debut century and leaves the tricky question of who misses out when Sodhi returns in the West Indies where pitches are expected to turn.

Hesson raised the prospect of playing two spinners in the Caribbean, which probably depends on whether Daniel Vettori (back) can prove his fitness, having set himself a deadline of the West Indies tour as to whether he will push on towards the World Cup.

If Neesham and Corey Anderson were both to play, then one of the three pacemen would have to drop out. Hesson said there was room for both allrounders and Sodhi in the same 11.

“Conditions will dictate what happens, and form and injuries and we’re a number of months away from that. The calmness and the way Jimmy went about his work was impressive.”

Hesson labelled Neesham’s debut innings of 137 not out exceptional for the cool-headedness he showed, taking the pressure off captain Brendon McCullum as he became the first New Zealander to score a test triple century.

The team now have a short break before leaving for Dubai on March 8 for a pre-World Twenty20 camp. Hesson was a satisfied coach at the great strides his team made, particularly fighting out of a deep hole in Wellington.

“It defined the way we want to play our cricket,” he said.

– © Fairfax NZ News

Feb 072014
Parry eager to grasp opportunity

By Rob Barnett

2013 was an unfortunate year for Stephen Parry, yet he already feels “lucky” in 2014 after being named in England’s squads for the tour of the Caribbean and the World Twenty20 in Bangladesh.

Some will consider the Lancashire left-arm spinner a left-field selection, although he boasts 63 T20 wickets in 56 games at an impressive average of 22.44. Such figures should stand him in good stead for the one-day and Twenty20 internationals with West Indies and the matches in Bangladesh that follow.

Perhaps the most remarkable element of the 28-year-old’s call-up is that his 2013 season was cut short by a freak injury involving Red Rose head coach Peter Moores and a ‘Sidearm’ cricket ball thrower in the Northampton nets last July.

Giving his first interview after his selection was announced, Parry recalled the events for ecb.co.uk from his winter base in Perth.

“It was just me and Moorsey halfway through the Northants game – I was 12th man and we just went for a hit with the dog-chucker and he got one wrong and it was flat. It hit me clean in the forearm and snapped it, a straight snap,” he said.

“I was thinking of not coming out to Perth this year, but as I missed the rest of the season I thought it was really important to just get out and play some cricket and get back into it.

Stephen Parry in Friends Life t20 action days before he freakishly suffered a broken arm when Peter Moores gave him throw-downs

“I’ve just enjoyed playing cricket and seeing how my arm goes, but it’s reacted really well and now I’m fully fit and everything’s brilliant. I’m really, really glad I came out now.”

Parry recovered from the blow to play three second XI matches in September and Lancashire’s last LV= County Championship contest.

He has since been representing Midland-Guildford in Perth for a second winter, but will soon fly to the West Indies to link up with skipper Stuart Broad’s squad.

From Western Australia, the gregarious Mancunian had to keep news of his call-up largely to himself after speaking to the ECB’s new National Selector.

“I got the phone call off James Whitaker and it’s been a long 24 hours because I just wanted to scream it out, but I managed to hold myself in,” Parry explained.

“I told close family and my wife. It’s been a very nice time because it’s something you’re always trying to work towards. Not everyone’s lucky enough to put that shirt on but it looks like I’ve got a great chance of doing that now, a fantastic chance. I’m very proud at the moment. I feel like I’m eight foot, not six foot.”

Parry had little expectation of ending this winter with England, not least because he missed his inclusion in the preliminary party for the World T20 during mid-January.

“I didn’t even realise the 30-man squad (had been named) because I’d just seen that the Twenty20 squad was announced for over here against Australia and I thought that’s got to be going to the West Indies – there aren’t going to be any changes,” he admitted.

“But just before the three T20s, I was doing some cricket training and I finished and I looked at my phone and I had five missed calls off my dad and I thought ‘Oh my God; I hope everything’s okay’.

“But he said ‘you do know you’re on the news, dont you?’ and I said ‘what for?’. He said ‘you’re in the 30-man squad’ and I thought ‘that’s amazing’.”

Parry is optimistic of his bowling prospects on the generally slow and low-bouncing pitches of the Caribbean and Bangladesh, having previously performed well in India.

“Over there you know you could get a little bit of help and I think my style of bowling should suit it,” he added.

“I had success when I was over there with the Performance Programme so I’m quietly confident that I’ll bowl really well.”

Feb 062014
Moeen and Parry in England squads


Worcestershire’s Moeen Ali and Lancashire’s Stephen Parry have been included in the England squad to tour the Caribbean and for the ICC World Twenty20 to be played in Bangladesh.

Moeen and Parry are the only uncapped players in the ICC World Twenty20 squad while Nottinghamshire’s left arm fast bowler Harry Gurney is selected for his first full England squad for the Caribbean matches.

Moeen Ali has been rewarded for his consistent performances with county side Worcestershire by selection for both England squads

National Selector James Whitaker said: “We would like to congratulate Moeen Ali and Stephen Parry on their selection for the tour to the Caribbean and then to represent England in the ICC World Twenty20. It is an exciting opportunity for Moeen and Stephen and all the England players.

“Both Moeen and Stephen have been very consistent performers for Worcestershire and Lancashire and both counties and their coaching staffs must take credit for their continued progress.

“Harry Gurney, under the guidance of the excellent coaches at Trent Bridge, has performed well for Nottinghamshire in limited overs cricket – showing good control with the white ball and, as a left arm quick, brings some variety to the tour party.

“England have won the ICC World Twenty20 before – in 2010 in the Caribbean – and this group has an exciting mix of youth and Twenty20 experience and I am sure with good preparation, desire and determination they will be able to produce an exciting brand of cricket.”

Stuart Broad will captain the squad in both the One Day Internationals in the Caribbean  – in the absence of the rested Alastair Cook – as well as the Twenty20s and in the ICC World Twenty20. Eoin Morgan will be vice-captain for both tours.

James Whitaker paid tribute to the value that Morgan brings to the squad. He said: “Eoin has recognised leadership qualities and he has successfully led England sides in the past. This status of vice-captain is a reward for him. We believe that he and Stuart will form an excellent leadership team.

Tour party for the Caribbean

S Broad (Nottinghamshire – captain)
E Morgan (Middlesex – vice captain)
M Ali (Worcestershire)
R Bopara (Essex)
T Bresnan (Yorkshire)
J Buttler (Lancashire)
J Dernbach (Surrey)
H Gurney (Nottinghamshire)
A Hales (Nottinghamshire)
C Jordan (Sussex)
M Lumb (Nottinghamshire)
S Parry (Lancashire)
J Root (Yorkshire)
B Stokes (Durham)
J Tredwell (Kent)
L Wright (Sussex)

England v Vice Chancellor’s XI: February 25 (Antigua)
Three-match ODI series at the Sir Vivian Richards Cricket Ground, Antigua: February 28, March 2 & 5.
Three-match Twenty20 series at the Kensington Oval, Barbados: March 9, 11 & 13.

Squad for the ICC World Twenty20, Bangladesh

S Broad (Nottinghamshire-captain)
E Morgan (Middlesex – vice captain)
M Ali (Worcestershire)
R Bopara (Essex)
T Bresnan (Yorkshire)
J Buttler (Lancashire)
J Dernbach (Surrey)
A Hales (Nottinghamshire)
C Jordan (Sussex)
M Lumb (Nottinghamshire)
S Parry (Lancashire)
J Root (Yorkshire)
B Stokes (Durham)
J Tredwell (Kent)
L Wright (Sussex)

Super 10 – Group 1
March 22 – v New Zealand
March 27 – v Sri Lanka
March 29 – v South Africa
March 31 – v Qualifier
(All matches in Chittagong)

Feb 022014
Broad eyes Caribbean upturn

By Dominic Farrell

Captain Stuart Broad believes there is clear room for improvement ahead of England’s ICC World Twenty 20 campaign in Bangladesh.

England concluded their tour of Australia with an 84-run loss in the final T20 international encounter at Sydney.

The players will now enjoy a couple of weeks at home before heading to the Caribbean – the scene of England’s 2010 World T20 triumph – and beginning their preparations in earnest through six limited-overs encounters against West Indies.

“It has been a tough tour, there’s no hiding from that,” Broad told ecb.co.uk when reflecting on his time Down Under playing across all three formats. “As players, losing so many games, it hurts you.

Stuart Broad was the pick of England's bowlers with figures of 3-30 in the final T20 international at Sydney

“Why you train and work on your skills, it is to be able to beat the opposition and we’ve not been able to do that.

“You have to take some sort of positive out of it and as a Twenty20 side we’ve got six weeks together coming up.

“There’s obvious areas for improvement and, when you’ve got really obvious goals to improve on, you can actually improve pretty quickly with hard work.

“That’ll be three weeks in the Caribbean of hard work on our skills, on our craft, on our fitness – certainly on our fielding – to get us in the best shape to go to Bangladesh.”

Following the relentless experience of back-to-back Ashes series and associated one-day contests against Australia, Broad is certainly looking forward to the prospects of a break and some new faces in the opposing dressing room

“Even one, two nights at home can make a huge difference,” he said. “Australia have been ruthless, they’ve been relentless and they’ve been fantastic. They’ve really outplayed us.

“But a little break at home, a different opposition to play against – we’ve played against Australia for eight months and it will be nice to bowl at someone who’s not Australian.

“Hands up, they’ve outplayed us and it’s disappointing but there are opportunities that come out of losses and we have to take them.

The reverse at Stadium Australia completed a 3-0 loss in a series England entered with high hopes, but Broad insists his group still have what it takes to claim glory on the subcontinent in March.

He added: “This isn’t a reflection of our chances in Bangladesh. I’d expect conditions to be hugely different.

“Australia as a cricket nation have got on top of us this winter in the Test matches, in the one-dayers and the Twenty20s. The momentum of the results has carried through and it’s been very hard to stop.

“It’s not panic stations for the T20 side. We’ve got world-class players in that side and we just need to express ourselves better in the Caribbean leading forward to Bangladesh because it will be important to get a bit of momentum leading into that World Cup.”

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