Birmingham Bears are “putting a lot of thought” into the identity of their second overseas player, alongside Jeetan Patel, in the NatWest T20 Blast in 2017.
But the project will not be rushed, says Bears Sport Director Ashley Giles who is grappling with the many complexities of a search for a top-level overseas star.
I’m not in favour of chopping and changing and we want stability throughout the tournament.Ashley Giles
There is no need to rush, with Birmingham’s NatWest T20 Blast campaign not starting until they visit Worcestershire Rapids on July 7.
So the club is carefully assessing all the options in terms of not just the talent but the character of potential recruits.
“One thing that Ian Bell came back with very strongly from winning the Big Bash with Perth Scorchers is that they were really good people,” Giles said. “They were all pulling in the right direction and worked together really well as a unit. It is important that any signing we make is the right fit for the dressing-room as well as the right talent.
“It’s something we are putting a lot of thought into, but it’s not straightforward because there are an increasing number of mitigating factors.
“International sides are increasingly protective of their players because they play so much cricket. That makes us a bit wary. And then there will be players who will be going off to play in the Caribbean Premier League.
“What we have seen over past seasons is that consistency of selection is really important in T20. Last year the Bears were going great guns with Luke Ronchi. He then went off to play for New Zealand and Matthew Wade came in and didn’t do much wrong but it just became a bit disjointed.
“I’m not in favour of chopping and changing and we want stability throughout the tournament. We don’t want somebody who’s going to be clearing off and playing elsewhere and we don’t want somebody who’s going to be taken away by their country.
“Of course, we would to get like the situation resolved as quickly as possible but we will wait and be patient if it means that we get the right player.”
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