Vernon Philander has been taken on by Sussex for the first half of the English season.
The rejuvenated seamer, who bounced back from injury to be named Man of the Series after the Proteas tour of Australia, will play six county matches and the group stages of their one-day series. He will play alongside Stiaan van Zyl, who recently signed a three-year Kolpak agreement with the south coast side.
The county’s coach, Mark Davis described the signing of Philander as ‘a great coup’, especially for a second-division side.
‘It is often hard to tie down good cricketers at the start of the season because so many of them are involved in what-ball cricket for their countries, or in the IPL. But Vernon is not involved in the Champions Trophy, and isn’t in the IPL, so he was a top target. He brings a lot of experience; he is not just a great bowler, he is an all-rounder with some good scores, so he will be a wonderful asset to the club.’
The signing is beneficial for South Africa, too, for although Philander has played County cricket before – this will be his fifth county after Middlesex, Somerset, Kent and Nottinghamshire – he will be getting acclimatised before South Africa’s Test series against England in July and August.
‘Although I haven’t come up against Sussex much in my time playing in England, I’ve always heard good things about the club and setup,’ said Philander. ‘Hopefully I can put in some good performances to help the team in both red and white ball cricket, and pass on my experience to some of the younger players who I’ve heard such positive reports about.’
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