County news February 23, 2012

Northampton succeed in spinner search

ESPNcricinfo staff

Northamptonshire have concluded their search for a left-arm spinner by bringing in Con de Lange, a 31-year-old South African who qualifies as a UK resident from his time living in Scotland. de Lange's signing has been made possible due to the assistance of "external benefactors", chief executive David Smith said.

Northants have been without a left-arm slow bowler for the last two years and recently stated that they were looking to fill that gap before the start of the season. de Lange, who has played all of his cricket in South Africa, has 175 first-class wickets to his name and is a capable lower-order batsman.

"I'm very excited to be joining the Northants squad, having noticed how well the team has played over recent seasons," de Lange said. "I want to be part of a successful squad and help the club gain promotion to Division One of the County Championship. I'm a fighter and I'm determined to always give my best for the team."

The arrival of de Lange will provide competition for offspinner James Middlebrook as the county looks to go one better on last season's third-place finish in Division Two.

David Capel, Northamptonshire's head coach, said: "We have considered many candidates throughout the past 12 months and I am pleased that we a signed a player of Con's quality, who will further strengthen the spin bowling department. I'm sure he will prove to be a great addition to the team."

Smith added: "The club has been very fortunate to have had some external benefactors in Northamptonshire assisting us in making this signing possible. At 31 years of age, Con will bring valuable experience to our squad and help us to be competitive in all forms of the game."