County news August 6, 2013

Somerset dealt blow with loss of Rehman

Somerset's hopes of avoiding relegation in the County Championship have been dealt a crushing blow with the news that Abdur Rehman, the left-arm spinner, has been named in the Pakistan Test and ODI squad to tour Zimbabwe and will not be available to fulfil his county contract.

Rehman, who claimed 27 championship wickets in four games for Somerset in 2012, was seen as key to the club's survivalt. It was hoped that his style would prove particularly useful on dry, late-season wickets. Somerset are currently seventh in Division One - one place about the relegation zone - but Surrey are only eight points behind and have a game in hand.

While Alviro Petersen is currently fulfilling the role of overseas player, the club's director of cricket, Dave Nosworthy, confirmed to ESPNcricinfo that Petersen would not be staying at the club to fill in for Rehman.

Instead the club hope to announce another signing within the next few days. It is understood that the club are currently close to securing another player, with work progressing on a work permit. But their options in the overseas player market are not extensive. Several international teams are engaged, the Caribbean Premier League is in full swing and there are some A tours in progress too.

"Rehman would miss, by my reckoning, four of the five four-day games we had planned for him," Nosworthy told ESPNcricinfo. "So we're looking at Option B. Petersen will not be staying with us.

"Things have been tough in various sways, but we still have hopes in the limited-overs competitions and I'm confident we can improve our four-day form.

"Everyone knows that we have a couple of big name players - Nick Compton and Jos Buttler - out of contract. But we want them to stay, we're offered them new contracts and work goes on to continue to persuade them."

While Somerset's red ball form has been disappointing, they have performed much better in white ball cricket. They are currently top of the Yorkshire Bank 40 Group C table and have reached the quarter-finals of the Friend Life t20. Somerset were second in the County Championship in 2012 but replaced their previous director of cricket, Brian Rose, with Nosworthy at the end of the season.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • dummy4fb on August 8, 2013, 21:46 GMT

    May be it's time to play Waller the young English wrist spinner!

  • JG2704 on August 7, 2013, 8:26 GMT

    @Derek Grabham on (August 6, 2013, 22:30 GMT) Agreed that it would be nice to have a decent bowler but surely (as posted to you the other day) our batsmen have been the ones who have really gone off the boils and have let us down in the CC.

    You mentioned all the name batsmen we have. Alviro started well but then seemed to fade before SA called him away. Nick has been solid again (if not as great as last season) , but Trescothick,Hildreth,Buttler , Craig and Trego may all be decent players but what have they done this season in the CC?

    Our bowling may not be taking 20 wickets as regularly as we'd like but when our batsmen are not performing we have situations where the bowlers are not getting the opportunity to even bowl twice

  • dummy4fb on August 6, 2013, 22:47 GMT

    I am sure Abdul Qadir is fit willing and probably fully free for all matches!!!

  • dummy4fb on August 6, 2013, 22:30 GMT

    In the 70 and 80s we have Garner and Botham, in the 90s Caddick, in the noughties we have Willoughby (wonderful servant for Somerset). NOW, who have we got? no-one in the same class so we need quality bowlers, look to Steyn and Morkel and Rehman.

  • dummy4fb on August 6, 2013, 22:27 GMT

    Well, that is Somerset to you supporters, gauranteed to give some heartache!! The signing of the overseas players is poor, it has to be said. Strangely, the runner-ups pendants seem to us a more prosective buy than the winner medal. Dont be surprised if Somerset is relegated and runner ups in the YB40. i think I will put a big wager on knowing the luck Somerset is having!!!

    Munkeymomo, yes we need a quality overseas bowler, it is what i have been saying all season, BOWLERS WITH 20 WICKETS WIN GAMES FOR YOUR SIDE!!! That is why we are at the bttom end ofhe CC table.

  • JG2704 on August 6, 2013, 19:57 GMT

    I genuinely don't understand why we have been having so many issues with overseas signings. Is it just bad luck?

    Last year (pre season) we had Van Der Merwe for the CT in the absence of Pollard and he was immense. Just the sort of livewire we needed but apparently there were some visa issues with him. Then we had Phillander and I thought great - but due to his workload restriction he wasn't the same bowler he has been for SA. Then we had the coup of signing Gayle for the T20s which turned out too good to be true when Gayle suddenly decided playing for WI was important again - I wonder why? The Du Plessis was signed and called away

    Is it just Somerset's luck or is it that they don't do their homework re possibilities of players being called away? I wonder if there is anything which can be done - communication with national selectors etc - to ensure these things don't keep happening? Maybe sign players who are basically retired from international cricket?

  • JG2704 on August 6, 2013, 19:47 GMT

    Fantastic news after a brilliant performance against Surrey in the T20.

    If ever there was an example of the phrase

    "It never rains , it pours"

    Somerset 2013 is it.

    First , pretty much all our batsmen are consistently out of form leading to poor CC form

    Second, We get Eng stirring it up by filling Jos's head with ideas that he might succeed Prior and now he is unhappy about just being an oufielder - when he was perfectly happy playing that role last year

    Third - SA finally find favour with AP as a 50 over player and he misses games

    4th - Stories/rumours about Compton being unsettled

    5th - We lose Tres for the T20 QF

    6th - We lose the T20QF

    7th - Now Pakistan have suddenly found favour with Rehman as a shorter formats bowler

    Oh and I forgot the laughable/cryable bit of captaincy by Tres vs Warwicks

  • Munkeymomo on August 6, 2013, 15:52 GMT

    Hopefully if we win one of the lim. overs comps we can keep hold of JB/NC. We deperately need a new overseas bowler.

    Help us Dale Steyn, you're our only hope. Hehe.

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