County news March 14, 2017

Derbyshire sign SA allrounder Smit

ESPNcricinfo staff

Daryn Smit spent 14 seasons with Dolphins © BCCI

Daryn Smit, the former Dolphins allrounder, has signed for Derbyshire on a two-year contract. Smit, 33, had decided to leave Dolphins at the end of the 2016-17 season in order to relocate to the UK and has previously played for Derbyshire 2nd XI and Lancashire club side Ramsbottom.

A batsman capable of keeping wicket and bowling legspin, Smit played in Durban for 14 seasons, during which time he represented South Africa A. However, he will qualify as a non-overseas player for Derbyshire.

In first-class cricket, he has scored 5711 runs at 37.32, to go with 106 wickets 32.49. He has played almost 200 times in the white-ball formats and in 2009 was part of South Africa's preliminary 30-man squad for the World T20.

"I'm delighted to join Derbyshire and get an opportunity to play county cricket," Smit said. "I've enjoyed my time with the Dolphins, and I'm extremely grateful for the opportunities they gave me, but I'm now looking forward to exciting new times in England with Derbyshire.

"I still have a lot to give, both on the field and also helping the younger guys in the dressing room, and I hope I can contribute to a successful period for the club."

Derbyshire have undergone significant restructuring during the off-season, after finishing bottom of the County Championship as well as failing to reach the knockout stages of either limited-overs competition. Kim Barnett was appointed director of cricket, while the club has signed Luis Reece, Gary Wilson, Hardus Viljoen, Imran Tahir and Jeevan Mendis for 2017.

Barnett said: "Daryn is a vastly experienced batsman, with over 14 years as a professional in the game, and will strengthen the depth to our batting line-up this season.

"He has played in England before and performed very well when given the chance with the Second XI at the end of last summer, impressing many at the club with his quality and professionalism towards his game."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Vaughanographic on March 14, 2017, 18:18 GMT

    If there isn't anyone better than Daryn why shouldn't he play? As a former captain he can play an invaluable mentoring role to youngsters. Any player who can bat 3, keep, captain and bowl leg spin is a brilliant acquisition.

  • Peakfan on March 14, 2017, 17:00 GMT

    Not short-sighted and crazy if it results in success. The club has some fine talent coming through and has recruited wisely with some high quality professionals. With Imran Tahir and Jeevan Mendis sharing an overseas role and working with Matt Critchley, Hardus Viljoen to give a spearhead to the attack and work with a clutch of young seamers, Gary Wilson to work with the highly-talented Harvey Hosein and now the experienced Smit to show young batsmen how to get a run chase over the line, we have some fine role models. I don't have an issue with it and they won't be pushovers this season.

  • WolfberriesToo on March 14, 2017, 12:54 GMT

    Well, ANOTHER shortsighted and crazy decision by a English County, It appears English Cricket and English Cricketers aren't really a priority for Counties nowadays!

  • VRDBB on March 14, 2017, 11:34 GMT

    Absolutely delighted for Daryn Smit as he is a hard working cricketer. He should have represented SA at full international level as some stage of his career but was extremely un lucky not to do so...

  • Shandorinho on March 14, 2017, 10:21 GMT

    So along with Matt Critchley and Mendis/Tahir, that's potentially three legspinners in the side at any one time. Suppose variety ISN'T the spice of life for Derbyshire! They may have made a number of acquisitions over the winter, but are still sorely in need of a big hitter up the order for the shorter formats - preferably an opener. In recent years, Derbyshire have relied on Wes Durston and Chesney Hughes to get them off to quick starts in white-ball cricket; but they've now both departed. Luis Reece might make the grade, but has so far been more of a red-ball batsman...

  • bigfrank on March 14, 2017, 10:19 GMT

    How does someone who played for SA A and 14 years for a SA FC team qualify as a "non overseas" player? Another wannabe 1st Division second rate county denying an English player a contract.

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