Australia quick James Pattinson has signed a two-year deal with Brisbane Heat for the Big Bash League. Pattinson, who had been with Melbourne Renegades between 2013 and 2017, missed the entire last season because of a back stress fracture - the fourth such time he had been diagnosed with the injury in more or less exactly the same spot in his back.
He subsequently underwent a surgery in New Zealand late last year, the same procedure that helped prolong the careers of former New Zealand quick Shane Bond, and current players Matt Henry, Hamish Bennett and Corey Anderson.
"I'm feeling very good physically after the surgery and I'm looking forward to getting back into some bowling during the winter," Pattinson said. "The facilities at Allan Border Field are second to none so that will also be very helpful as I build towards the coming season."
Pattinson hasn't played a competitive match since July last year but Daniel Vettori, the Heat coach, believed that his workload could be managed like how his former New Zealand team-mate and former assistant at the Heat, Shane Bond's had been done.
"Knowing how Shane and other bowlers have managed their career in similar circumstances will help us provide the right environment for him to deliver his best," Vettori said. "As a senior player, James will also have the chance to do likewise and mentor some of our up-and-coming bowlers.
"I'm sure the Heat fans will make him very welcome when he arrives and we're looking forward to some more exciting matches with James in our squad."
Pattinson bolsters a pace attack that includes Mark Steketee, Brendan Doggett, and allrounder Ben Cutting. Pattinson said he was feeling "very good physically" and that he was looking forward to return to action.