County news January 9, 2013

Petersen to extend Somerset stay

ESPNcricinfo staff

Alviro Petersen, the South Africa opening batsman, has agreed to extend his early-season stint with Somerset and will now play in the Friends Life t20.

Petersen, 32, had initially signed for the first half of the County Championship season but will now extend his stay until the end of July.

He has not played an ODI since January 2012 and is unlikely to be involved in South Africa's Champions Trophy campaign that begins on June 6. He will therefore be available for the Flt20 which begins on June 26.

"I am very pleased that I will now be able to stay on at Somerset and play Twenty20," Petersen said. "Over the years they have done well in the competition and I would like to think that my contributions will help them to lift the trophy."

Petersen has a steady record in Twenty20 having played 72 domestic matches averaging 28.08 with 13 half-centuries. His runs have come at a healthy strike rate of 121.56.

He will attempt to help Somerset on their way to an elusive trophy. The ghost of many near-misses hangs over them having not won a competition since 2005 despite contesting three finals since and losing in the 2012 Flt20 semi-final.

"This is great news for Somerset," Somerset head coach Andy Hurry said. "Having a top class performer like Alviro in our T20 squad will certainly boost our batting and bring a wealth of experience to the side."

Somerset encountered problems trying to bring in overseas players last season. Their initial signing of Chris Gayle was scuppered by his return to the West Indies one-day squad. And a subsequent attempt to bring in Faf du Plessis was blocked by Cricket South Africa.