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Stuart Meaker signs for Sussex in bid to revive career

Former England fast bowler hopes to become latest quick to rediscover form at Hove

Stuart Meaker played for England Lions as recently as the 2016-17 winter

Stuart Meaker played for England Lions as recently as the 2016-17 winter  •  Getty Images

Stuart Meaker, the fast bowler who played four white-ball internationals for England in 2011 and 2012, has become the latest in a line of seamers to sign for Sussex in an attempt to get their career back on track.
Meaker, 30, had a year left on his contract at Surrey, but director of cricket Alec Stewart agreed to let him move to Hove in order to pursue first-team opportunities.
Once considered the fastest bowler in the country after being clocked at 95mph in ECB trials at Loughborough, Meaker has struggled due to a series of injuries, playing only one County Championship game in the last two seasons.
Sussex has become something of a go-to destination for fast bowlers hoping to revive their careers in recent years. Chris Jordan, Tymal Mills, Ajmal Shahzad, Ollie Robinson, Aaron Thomason and Reece Topley are among the bowlers to join the club after struggling to realise their potential at their previous counties, while Ishant Sharma recently attributed his international revival to his time at Hove as an overseas player.
Meaker made his England debut in 2011 as a 22-year-old, taking a wicket in ODIs at Mumbai and Kolkata, and toured India with the Test squad in their victorious 2012 series. He played two T20Is immediately after that series, but was soon "bordering on the yips" following various confidence-denting injuries.
England have continued to monitor his progress. He has worked extensively with Kevin Shine, the former ECB fast-bowling coach, at the national performance centre in Loughborough, and played for the Lions as recently as the 2016-17 winter.
"I am undoubtedly grateful to Surrey for the opportunities and memories I've had at the club since I was 13," Meaker said. "I have been fortunate to have played alongside some of the greats of the game and in front of some of the best crowds the game has to offer.
"While I've loved being a part of the wider squad and their successes the last few seasons, I feel now is the time for me to seek opportunities to get more regular game time and get back to enjoying the game that I love.
""I look forward to being able to contribute to an already supremely talented squad of players as well as a team with direction and desire to achieve success and silverware in the future."
Jason Gillespie, Sussex's head coach, said: "I'm really excited that Stuart has agreed to join us.
"He gives us some real depth in our pace department and Stuart is very keen to show what he can do for Sussex.
"As someone who has played international cricket in the past, we know what Stuart is capable of. Everyone at Sussex is really looking forward to working with him and seeing him perform strongly for our club."