Sunday, 4 March 2018

T20 signing complexity

With Derbyshire having already announced the signing of Duanne Olivier and Mitchell Santner for the two halves of the season, Santner being one of our permitted two overseas players for the Vitality Blast, the search is presumably ongoing for the other player.

How difficult is recruitment for counties these days!  Before signing Olivier, we had to wait to see who was picked up for the IPL, while any signing for the second half of the season has to await any expressions of interest and subsequent engagement for the Caribbean Premier League.

The Vitality Blast starts on Friday July 6 at the 3aaa County Ground, with the CPL starting on August 8. Thus, any player picked up for the latter will perforce miss at least the last four group games in this country, which is when it gets down to the nitty gritty, of course.

I had previously suggested that Martin Guptill or Andre Russell would be good options for Derbyshire, with Colin Munro another option. Yet the first two named earned two of the top paying $160K slots in the Caribbean, suggesting that they won't need a stint here to keep them in beer money. Munro went for $40K and just about every player you could think of as a viable option seems to be involved, as you can see here

I've never been a fan of 'revolving door' overseas players, which was seen at its least effective when we signed Dilshan and Amla. Fine players both, legends in their own country, yet adjusting to English wickets proved problematic for them in whistle stop visits to the county.

Maybe there's another South African in mind, but for continuity they may at least consider a return, even to cover those last few games, for Jeevan Mendis.

He has had a good winter, which recently saw a return to national colours for T20 games against Bangladesh, where he did well. We all know his limitations with the bat from last season, but on wickets that will be closer to what he is used to, he can make a difference in the closing overs, as a hard hitting batsman who can clear the ropes. His cameo against Glamorgan was a key factor in our win there last summer, while his unbeaten 44 from just 23 balls carried us over the line against Warwickshire in the RLODC.

As a bowler, a partnership with Mitchell Santner (and Matt Critchley) would give us good control and additional depth to already long batting. Taking 30 wickets in an overseas stint that began in April was a good stint for a leggie, and I would be happy to see him return for a format in which he has done well around the globe.

And certainly in what would appear to be a very limited market. They will pick up someone good, for sure, but I hope this shows that it is some way removed from phoning an agent and quickly doing a deal.

As always, I welcome your thoughts on a potential T20 side that would then be along these lines:



  1. Could do with a few more overseas players in there!

  2. I like the look of that team. Possible weaknesses; with our strength in spin would teams ensure that we play on less spin friendly wickets? Would we miss a Broderick like whippet in the field? Our death bowling does not look that strong?
    My main concern would be the death bowling. Another seamer who specialises in death bowling & has the batting competence of Mendis would be my ideal. Whether we could attract such a person is another question.
    Something from left field, watching the series in NZ, how about Santner as a T20 opener? He seems to have the right attributes

  3. Does anyone know if Ben Cotton was offered limited overs contract?

    In 20/20 the key is having 5 good bowlers. Peakfans team it would be Rampaul, Viljoen, Mendis??, Santer should preform to level where you give them 4 overs each. I think personally prefer to see another bowler where you could be confident to bowl all 20. I think personally Critchley has the ability to do this with Madsen. I think the 2 players in the team who would need to up the game from last year would be Alex Hughes and Gary Wilson. They both averaged 18 and 19 personally good team needs its players to be averaging n the high 20s. The biggest factor for me is do we get John Wright and Domic Cork this is huge. The club was one of 1st county to do this and it worked treat. It is sometimes hard to see what a coaches do to a team but Derbyshire performances speak for themselves last year. I learnt seeing derbyshire they got awful lots singles, twos and three and not many dot balls.

    1. It is hard to score big averages in T20 batting down the order Gary. Especially when the top four does well, as ours often did last year and they only get in for the last 5 overs.
      I think if 5-8 average in the late teens and at over a run a ball it is pretty good.
      I have no idea if we will sign Mendis, but he is a decent option, if only for those awkward last four games.
      And yes, the running was a massive improvement last year. One a ball and a boundary an over will give you a competitive (on most grounds) 180 to bowl at...

  4. Godleman completely out of his comfort zone in T20 cricket, should concentrate on what he does best I.e championship and 50 over matches.Selection is often about horses for courses both for batsmen and bowlers in T20 and good fielding is an absolute necessity.

  5. Excellent summary Peakfan and agree with you that it is not ideal to sign a T2O player who will not be available for the full Derbyshire campaign. However, I still think that to take that last step and qualify for T20 Finals Day this year we still need to sign a top 6 specialist batsman in addition to Santner. As you say, though, finding a player who will improve the team and who has no other overseas commitments is becoming harder and harder. Not sure of their availability but two names perhaps to add to the mix could be Ross Taylor (No.1 pick now Guptill is away in the Caribbean Premier League) or Pakistan opener Fakhar Zaman? All the best, James

  6. Mohammad Nabi gone to Leicestershire. He was one Peakfan mentioned before. Hope we have someone good lined up


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