County news April 22, 2016

Lancashire sign Guptill for Blast

ESPNcricinfo staff

Martin Guptill's 237 is the highest score in a World Cup match © Getty Images

Lancashire have signed New Zealand batsman Martin Guptill for the 2016 NatWest T20 Blast season.

It is anticipated that Guptill, the first New Zealander to hit an ODI double-century and a member of the team that reached the 2015 World Cup final, will be available for six Lancashire games between his commitments with Mumbai Indians in the IPL and New Zealand's tour of South Africa.

Guptill was drafted into Mumbai Indians' IPL squad as a replacement for Lendl Simmons after he suffered a back injury that ruled him out of the rest of the tournament.

He is currently ranked at No. 3 in the T201 rankings and has previously represented Derbyshire in county cricket. In the 2011 T20 competition he averaged 34 from 14 games. He returned to the club for brief spells in 2012 and 2015 but did not play T20 cricket.

Lancashire won the NatWest Blast title in 2015.

"Martin is a formidable batsman, particularly in white ball cricket, and is currently ranked as the world's third best batsman in T20 cricket," Lancashire's Cricket Director and Head Coach, Ashley Giles, said. "He's currently playing IPL cricket alongside Jos Buttler and will be ready to hit the ground running when he arrives at Emirates Old Trafford.

"He's got the ability to take games away from the opposition very quickly once he gets going and I'm sure our fans will really enjoy watching him play."

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