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September 23, 2008
Essex's 18-year-old batsman, Jaik Mickleburgh, has signed a two-year contract extension which will keep him at the club until the end of the 2010 season.
Mickleburgh had previously been on an academy-professional contract but has been upgraded following a fine 2008 campaign. He began the season in the 2nd XI, but was picked to make his Championship debut against Leicestershire in August, scoring 60 in his maiden innings and 72 in his next match against Warwickshire last week.
Mickleburgh told essexcricket.org.uk: "I believe this contract is a reward for my progress over the year, including my performances in the seconds. I then couldn't have asked for a better start to my 1st XI career and hopefully I can do that on a consistent basis.
"Making my debut for a team that I've been working my way towards for years was obviously the highlight of my year but that was topped off by scoring a half-century on debut."
Mickleburgh is due to spend the winter in Australia at Paul Terry's Aus Cricket Academy from mid-October to mid-February, although his stay there would be cut short if he was selected for the England Under-19s trip to South Africa at the start of 2009.
Mickleburgh said: "I played regional cricket when I was younger but I've never received England recognition to date. Making runs in 1st XI cricket is bound to get you noticed more so hopefully that will push my chances of selection."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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