Stanbic Bank 20 Series 2010-11 November 5, 2010

Rocks sign Lara, Sidebottom for T20

ESPNcricinfo staff

Zimbabwean franchise Southern Rocks have signed former West Indies batsman Brian Lara and former England fast bowler Ryan Sidebottom for the Stanbic Bank Twenty20 competition, which starts on November 13 in Harare.

Sidebottom, 32, played 22 Tests, 25 ODIs and 18 Twenty20s for England, including the recent World Twenty20 triumph in the Caribbean, in an international career that spanned nine years before his international retirement in September. Lara, for many years regarded alongside Sachin Tendulkar as one of the best batsmen of his era, retired after the 2007 World Cup and has not played much competitive cricket since.

However, Lara had a stint with the unofficial Indian Cricket League in 2007-08, where he had a forgettable tournament with the bat and as captain of Mumbai Champs, and has maintained ambitions of coming out of retirement to try his hand at Twenty20 - a format that hadn't taken off internationally when he retired.

He was briefly in talks to play for Surrey in the English domestic Twenty20 tournament last season, and though those discussions fell through Lara was part of the MCC team that played the touring Pakistanis in a Twenty20 at Lord's in June, striking a 32-ball 37 before he was bowled by an Umar Gul yorker.

"We have signed Sidebottom and we have also confirmed the Lara deal, so we are done with the acquisition of new personnel and we are just ready to get going," Rocks chief executive Givemore Makoni told the Zimbabwe Independent.

"It was a bad season the last time on but we have achieved good results in the competitions that have been played so far. In Sidebottom we signed a player who has proven himself on the big stage and with Lara we just have got ourselves the best batsman to grace the game of cricket."

Rocks also secured the services of Stuart Matsikenyeri and Tatenda Taibu before the start of the current season, but have lost Sean Ervine, who has signed for Mutare-based franchise Mountaineers.

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  • Dummy4 on November 11, 2010, 19:11 GMT

    good that Lara has come out of retirement. bad news that no legend that has come out of retirement has ever succeeded when they came back. examples are mike tyson, micheal schumacher, michael jordan, jonah lomu. so we'll see. bad news for h-town though. Chigumbura has left the eagles to play for the rocks just 2 days before the start of t20. this means the capital city officially has the worst team in the league. good that ervine has come back home for another stint andi tip the rocks to win the t20. not because of lara though

  • Dummy4 on November 11, 2010, 12:44 GMT

    Is this being showed on television?

  • Dummy4 on November 11, 2010, 12:11 GMT

    TRUE CHAMPION...advance cricket showing that age is not limit , sachin now lara are example of it gr8 to see this and it boost the confidence of many first class players who are playing from many years .....cheers

  • Noxa on November 10, 2010, 14:08 GMT

    Nice to see Sir Brian Charles Lara supporting Zim cricket!

  • Sanchit on November 9, 2010, 15:09 GMT


  • Andres on November 8, 2010, 13:30 GMT

    I am sure Sachin name is no where in this Article....So I really cant Understand Y people are start Comparing..its a Lara Article,not Sachin!!!Come on people....

  • Raj on November 8, 2010, 2:18 GMT

    Ohh ! What a great news. World's Greatest EVER Mr. SIR Brian Charles LARA is back. I MUST take off that day to watch his batting.

    EVEN he scores 0, I MUST see his style of his LEAVE @ Crease. Greatest EVER batsmen the World has EVER seen.

    Honestly I was very disappointed, when he retired from game. He is the only batsmen in the world, who is the spectators delight. JUST THAT CLASS. ..... it continues. this this planet is alive.

    Dont compare SACHIN with LARA ... Lara is super genius. Sachin Played more games. what is his greatness. He took 15+ innings to break Mr. Laras record.

    EVEN after having the support of good batsmen right through his career. Whereas LARA worst batsmens in his team, still he managed to beat sachin.

    Can Mr. Sachin match Lara's Class. Who is better player of SPin. Who has more dominating nature of batting. ALL LARA not sachin. Playing more games and claiming that I am best doesn't make any sense.

  • Dummy4 on November 6, 2010, 13:46 GMT

    why people drag lara into this situation....ok....million people india backs sachin as best....becoz scored more centuries body can argue with that... brain lara is not arguably the best... but brain lara is a wizard with bat....thanx for the memories....

  • Dummy4 on November 6, 2010, 8:43 GMT

    Lara and Sidebottom signed to zimbabwe franchise side Rocks. That in itself is a fantastic achievement for the rocks and ultimatelyfor zim cricket , having these chaps play along the local guys even if it is not on the more competitive international stage is going to give them much needed experience thinking in particular of the taibus and matsikinyeres et al and the opposing bowlers, lara will always be a great wicket to have taken at any level of cricket . Certainly the raised intrest and following of these guys playing in the zim franchise system will be contegious , it will raise profesionalism and who knows maybe we could be seeing live broadcasts of matches on a regular basis , that is more than certain test playing nations can say. As for who is the greatest of them all , the facts and statistics are there for all to read and smile or weap .

  • caribman87 on November 6, 2010, 1:10 GMT

    well he was arguably the best batsman of hir era alongside sachin but he was certainly more entertaining to watch than the rest and also more talented. Still wouldlike to see him come back.

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