County news March 31, 2010

Somerset sign Aussie Damien Wright

Cricinfo staff

Somerset have signed Australian paceman Damien Wright to replace Murali Kartik for the first month of the season while Kartick is involved with the Indian Premier League.

Wright, 34, has had county experience with Northamptonshire and Glamorgan, and also played for Scotland in the Cheltenham and Gloucester Trophy in 2002. He's played state cricket in Australia for both Tasmania and Victoria, where he's had good success this winter. In total Wright has had 103 first-class outings, collecting 335 wickets at an average of 28.72 and also taken 122 one-day wickets at 29.51 runs. He also has a useful first-class record with the bat, making 3,264 runs at an average of 24.35.

Brian Rose, Sopmerset's director of cricket, thinks Wright's experience is perfect for his stand-in role in early part of the season. "He nearly became my first signing as director of cricket at Somerset and I have always rated him as a fine player. Damien is the sort of bowler who you want if you are looking to fill a gap for four weeks, because he is experienced, he has been there and is performing well," Rose told Western Morning News.

"He will be able to walk in and take on board the conditions that he will face in England early season because he has experienced that during his time at Northamptonshire. He is highly regarded by Cameron White for example and the rest of the Victorian Bushrangers team and is a very skilful opening bowler."

Somerset captain Marcus Trescothick said: "We have made no secret of the fact that we were looking to sign a quick bowler for the opening few matches and Damien Wright is a good performer so I am delighted to have him joining us. I have met him on numerous occasions and got to know him pretty well and several of the other guys at the club also know him so he will fit in well in the changing room and will do well for us out on the pitch."