Worcestershire signal blast intent with gun signings

New Zealand

Worcestershire have secured the signature of one of the world’s most destructive batsmen in their bid for Blast glory adding New Zealander Martin Guptill for the 2018 campaign.

Guptill is available for the Rapids first eight North Group matches and will be replaced by Australia man Callum Ferguson who has impressed over the last few seasons in the Big Bash.

Ferguson will be linking up with compatriot Travis Head who is set for a long spell at New Road.

The 31-year-old Guptill will link up with the Rapids on June 20 through to July 29 and is also available to play in the County Championship matches against Lancashire and Nottinghamshire when Head will be on international duty.

Head coach Kevin Sharp said of Guptill: “Martin is a world class player. With Martin and Travis and the rest of our batting line-up, it will be quite a scary prospect for some opposition sides to think what might happen.

“It is exciting for us to sign someone of his quality and I’m sure he is someone all the Rapids supporters will look forward to watching.

“In white ball, he is a destructive batsman – and his record proves that – and for him to be available for the first eight T20 games is excellent.

“But he also has a good record in red ball cricket and will also be able to play the two Championship matches in June when Travis is on international duty.”

Worcestershire

Ferguson will take over Blast duties from Guptill for the last six games of the Blast but is also available for the knockout stages of the Royal London One-Day Cup in mid June if Worcestershire progress through the North Group.

Sharp added: “When Travis leaves for the ODI Series with England, there will still be one Royal London One-Day Cup group game plus a potential quarter-final and semi-final before Martin Guptill arrives.

“Callum could be available to play in those and he will then step into the Blast for the last six games when Martin leaves.

“Callum is very keen to get back playing representative cricket and get himself back to where he wants to be and it is another excellent signing for us.”

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