County news November 6, 2014

Giles puts faith in Edwards' fire

ESPNcricinfo staff

Some days it comes together, some days it doesn't: George Edwards knows that when he bowls fast nobody, himself included, knows quite what to expect. But Edwards has enough raw potential to have persuaded Ashley Giles, Lancashire's new director of cricket, to make him his first signing at Old Trafford.

Edwards is the second pace bowler to arrive at Old Trafford since the end of last season, with Nathan Buck also signed from Leicestershire while Mike Watkinson was still in charge of cricket at Old Trafford.

Following the retirement of Kyle Hogg, the release of Kabir Ali and Giles' admission that Glen Chapple might play only intermittently now he has joined Giles' coaching staff, Lancashire have moved quickly to strengthen their seam bowling resources. They have also given academy graduates Tom Bailey and Saqib Mahmood professional contracts.

Edwards, 22, was selected for the England performance programme squad in South Africa last winter. He joins Lancashire on a two-year deal having graduated through the Surrey academy and he will meet his colleagues on Monday when they return for pre-season training.

"Lancashire, at first, wasn't really an option for me because Mike Watkinson had left and they were still sorting that out," Edwards told the Manchester Evening News. "My agent and I spoke to a few other counties, but as soon as Ash came in and explained to me where he wanted the club to go, what role he wanted me to play in that and how excited he was about the future, I knew Lancashire was where I wanted to go and play my cricket.

"I believe I am Ash's first signing, I don't want to let him down. I'm an aggressive bowler, and I'd like to think I can entertain the crowds a bit. I come in aggressively. When I'm at my best, I feel it's when I'm bowling with a bit of anger.

"My pace is one of my biggest assets. Some days it doesn't come together, but when it does, it comes out really nicely. I've got to make sure that happens more often than not. Surrey are well stocked with fast bowlers, so it's been difficult not being given the right amount of opportunities.

"I can't wait to work with Glen Chapple. The guy's taken nearly 1,000 first-class wickets, so he obviously knows what he's doing. He's one of the best bowlers of his generation. It will be a great opportunity to see how he goes about his business."

Edwards took eight wickets in four first-class matches for Surrey, including 4 for 44 on his Championship debut against Worcestershire in 2012.