December 8, 2009

New Zealand cricket

Napier heads for Napier

Andrew Miller

The Essex allrounder Graham Napier is off to his namesake city, Napier, a fortnight earlier than originally intended, as he hopes to revive his hopes of breaking back into the England Twenty20 squad with a spell with the New Zealand state team, Central Districts.

Napier, 29, was originally intending to fly out to Napier on Boxing Day. Now, however, he will depart on December 10, and is set to make his CD debut on December 17, in a 50-over contest against Wellington, the team he represented in the previous two seasons of New Zealand domestic cricket.

“I see the next four months as being hugely important as far as my chances of breaking back into the England Twenty20 squad go,” Napier told www.grahamnapier.com. “There is a World Twenty20 tournament in May [in the West Indies] and I want to be part of that. There are eight England players currently contracted to the IPL so I must be regarded highly out in India.

“Now I want to be recognised again by England and will put in as much work as I possibly can to achieve something I’ve striven for my entire career – to play for the full England team in a competitive international.”

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Andrew Miller is the former UK editor of ESPNcricinfo and now editor of The Cricketer magazine

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