Andrew Symonds is not exactly the future of Australian cricket but he will turn out for Queensland in the Futures League Twenty20 tournament this month. Symonds will use the week of matches in Melbourne to prepare for the KFC Twenty20 Big Bash, having agreed to continue his state career at Twenty20 level after his departure from international cricket.
The Futures League was created as an Under-23 tournament to help develop young state players but each side is allowed three over-age cricketers in any one match. Symonds, 34, will be joined by fellow over-agers Ben Laughlin, Glen Batticciotto and Craig Philipson in the Queensland squad.
Since his axing from the Australian team, Symonds has made just one appearance at state level, playing a one-off FR Cup match for Queensland in November. The Queensland Futures League coach Justin Sternes said Symonds would provide valuable on-field guidance for the young group.
"Andrew is a very experienced Twenty20 player so it will be of great benefit to the younger players in the group to be out there in the middle of the action with a player of his experience and ability," Sternes said. "The Bulls have really enjoyed his presence when he has played for them recently and he's quite keen to help out where he can with Queensland Cricket."
The Futures League Twenty20 tournament runs in Melbourne during the week starting December 13. Symonds was this week set to be in Papua New Guinea to take part in PNG Cricket's Twenty20 Legends Bash tournament that also features Michael Bevan, Greg Blewett, Michael Kasprowicz and Andy Bichel.