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Hughes' Worcestershire arrival delayed

David Hopps

March 8, 2012

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Michael Klinger crunches one through the off side, South Australia v Tasmania, Ryobi Cup final, Adelaide, February 25, 2012
Michael Klinger will join Worcestershire for the start of the season © Getty Images

Worcestershire have been forced to swap the dashing strokeplay of Phillip Hughes with the more measured approach of his fellow Australian Michael Klinger because Hughes' arrival at New Road has been delayed until late May due to his involvement in Australia's training camps.

The change is the latest setback for English counties trying to attract overseas players at a time of ever-expanding international commitments.

Hughes put a positive spin on his delayed arrival for his second stint in county cricket and if it is as successful as his brief period at Middlesex three years ago Worcestershire will deem it worth the wait. "I now have commitments with Australia that will delay my arrival at Worcestershire but while it has cut back my time in the UK I am confident that I will be better prepared," Hughes said.

Klinger's career has blossomed since his move from Victoria to South Australia in 2008, and he was named Australia's State Cricketer of the Year in each of his first two seasons with his new side. His first taste of county cricket comes relatively late in his career, at 31, and his reputation has never been higher.

He scored the third double-century of his first-class career against Tasmania last weekend and was also the leading run-getter in the recently-concluded Ryobi Cup one-day tournament, amassing 498 runs at an average of 55.33.

Worcestershire's director of Cricket, Steve Rhodes, said: "I saw Mike play out in Adelaide against New South Wales in October and his skill, attitude, and maturity as a player made me sit up and take note. Mike has recently captained South Australia to the domestic one-day title and his batting was one of the main reasons for the success."

Edited by Brydon Coverdale

David Hopps is the UK editor of ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by AdrianVanDenStael on (March 10, 2012, 12:34 GMT)

Well some might say that a "more measured approach" is more likely to work better anyway in early-season conditions in England where the ball is likely to seam around. However in 2009 Hughes actually did well for Middlesex in early-season conditions, and only started to fail as the season progressed.

Posted by StoneRose on (March 8, 2012, 14:06 GMT)

However guys like Klinger and Henriques can get visas and quality pros like Andrew McDonald cannot is beyond me. Why aren't the Pakistanis such as Hafeez given a chance?

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David Hopps David Hopps joined ESPNcricinfo as UK editor early in 2012. For the previous 20 years he was a senior cricket writer for the Guardian and covered England extensively during that time in all Test-playing nations. He also covered four Olympic Games and has written several cricket books, including collections of cricket quotations. He has been an avid amateur cricketer since he was 12, and so knows the pain of repeated failure only too well. The pile of untouched novels he plans to read, but rarely gets around to, is now almost touching the ceiling. He divides his time between the ESPNcricinfo office in Hammersmith and his beloved Yorkshire.
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