Matt Parkinson signs for Melbourne Stars in Big Bash
Lancashire spinner set for Big Bash stint
Lancashire leg-spinner Matthew Parkinson has signed for the Melbourne Stars for this year’s Big Bash competition, starting in December.
Parkinson, who has played for Lancashire since the age of 9 and graduated the Club's Academy, has signed for the Stars alongside Nepal leg-spinner Sandeep Lamichhane.
The Bolton-born leg spinner will replace Lamichhane for half the season, as Lamichhane plays for the Sylhet Sixers in the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL).
The 21 year-old, who signed his first professional contract with Lancashire in 2015, has enjoyed a very successful 2018 campaign, particularly with the white ball, taking 25 wickets in the Vitality Blast as Lancashire Lightning reached the semi-finals, as well as being the leading wicket taker with 18 in the Royal London One-Day Cup.
Parkinson, speaking after the announcement, said: “I am hugely excited to have signed for the Melbourne Stars. It’s one of the biggest T20 competitions in the world and I can’t wait to get over there and meet the rest of the squad.
“It’s a competition I have watched and admired for a long time and one that I’ve always wanted to play in. To have the chance to play for the Stars at the Melbourne Cricket Ground would be a dream come true.
“Whilst I’ve been really pleased with my T20 form over the last couple of years, I still have a lot to learn with the white ball and this will be another fantastic opportunity for me to develop my game, learn from some of the best players in the world and challenge myself in-front of some really big crowds.”
Melbourne Stars List Manager, Trent Woodhill, commented: "I watched Matt bowl for Lancashire in the Vitality Blast this season where he helped them reach the semi finals with some dominant performances."
Lancashire's Director of Cricket, Paul Allott, added: “This is a brilliant opportunity for Matt to represent the Melbourne Stars in the Big Bash League. He has been Lancashire’s most consistent T20 performer with the his leg spin bowling over the last two years and it’s a great chance for him to enhance his development and improve his white ball skills. He will also have the privilege and benefit of being coached by Shane Warne, who is helping the Stars with their preparations, during his spell down under.
“At Lancashire, we actively encourage our players to broaden their playing experience overseas and playing in the BBL in front of massive crowds at the iconic MCG will provide Matt with the type of high octane competition that he needs to be able to progress and perform at the highest level.
“As Matt was expected to be part of the England Lions squad to tour India in early 2019, both the ECB and Lancashire have taken the view that the chance to play in the BBL is one that he should take and that this experience will be equally beneficial to him in his future development.”