Hampshire to welcome Australian youngsters

17 January 2013 21:37:00 GMTPlus11

Half-a-dozen of Australia's most talented youngsters will spend the English season with Hampshire following an agreement between Cricket Australia and the county.

The club have established an international academy at the Ageas Bowl which will allow cricketers a 'winter' training camp in their off-seasons.

CA is very excited about this partnership and opportunity for our very best young players.

Pat Howard

The venture will see the six young Aussies play for six different clubs in the Southern Electric Premier League - the competition from which Glenn Maxwell was plucked last summer - for the duration of the 2013 season.

"The Ageas Bowl International Cricket Academy commences operations in April of this year and we are delighted that Cricket Australia is sending six high-performing young players to the Academy in its inaugural year," Hampshire chairman Rod Bransgrove said.

"This shows a high level of confidence and faith in the ABICA facilities and staff and we look forward to working with CA in accelerating the development of these talented young cricketers."

Cricket Australia's team performance manager Pat Howard said: "CA is very excited about this partnership and opportunity for our very best young players.

"The opportunity to experience cricket in a different country will grow them as players and as people. For those chosen it will be an important part of their development."

The six players will be chosen by Australia's national selection panel, which is headed up by John Inverarity.

Hampshire have had some high-profile Australians as their overseas players in recent years, including Shane Warne and Shane Watson.

This summer they have Australia Twenty20 captain George Bailey arriving in Southampton. Hampshire are 1212/1 to win Division Two of the County Championship while Lancashire can be backed at 1/50 and Leicestershire at 1212/1.

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