Johnson makes Derbyshire switch

Richard Johnson produced a smart stumping to remove Murali Kartik Getty Images

Derbyshire have made their first move to strengthen their squad in preparation for Division One cricket by signing wicketkeeper Richard Johnson from Warwickshire on a three-year deal.

Johnson, 24, developed through the Warwickshire system from the age of 10 and played in the team that won the CB40 final in 2010, but has found his first-team opportunities limited by the return to form of Tim Ambrose at Edgbaston.

Johnson had two loan spells with Derbyshire during the 2012 season, which included making a match-winning 79 against Yorkshire in a CB40 game, and will vie for a place with Tom Poynton as the club's first-choice keeper.

Derbyshire head coach Karl Krikken said: "I'm delighted to welcome our first signing of the close season as we pursue our aim of becoming a stable Division One club in 2013. The addition of Richard adds to our batting and wicketkeeping options at a time when intensifying competition for places is very important."

Ashley Giles, Warwickshire's director of cricket, said: "It's sad that we're losing such a talented home-grown player as Richard, who is very popular with everyone here at Warwickshire. However, we cannot stand in the way of someone's ambitions to play more first team cricket, so he leaves with the best wishes of all players and management at Warwickshire and I'm sure that he'll also enjoy a successful career at Derbyshire."

Johnson said: "I'm absolutely over the moon to be signing. When I came here on loan earlier in the summer I fitted in really well, the lads were great to be around and everyone at the club treated me brilliantly.

"Now having this opportunity to sign for Derbyshire for three years is amazing. I can't thank the club enough and I can't wait to get started. The chance to play first-team cricket with Derbyshire is a fantastic proposition. I have played a bit of first-team cricket for Warwickshire in the past, so I am hopeful that I can add some experience to the squad in that department."