Jake Lintott caps rapid rise with Hundred wildcard pick

Eight unsigned players earn call-ups after impressing in Blast campaign

Matt Roller
Matt Roller
Jake Lintott's fine season has been rewarded with a Hundred wildcard pick  •  Getty Images

Jake Lintott's fine season has been rewarded with a Hundred wildcard pick  •  Getty Images

Jake Lintott, the Birmingham Bears left-arm wristspinner who signed his first professional contract earlier this year, has been signed by Southern Brave as a wildcard pick for the inaugural season of the Hundred.
Lintott, 28, had played only four senior games a year ago, but has taken 19 wickets for the Bears with an economy rate of 6.60 since the start of the 2020 Vitality Blast season, and has earned a £24,000 deal as the final player in the Brave's men's squad.
Dillon Pennington (Birmingham Phoenix), Sam Cook (Trent Rockets) and Leus du Plooy (Welsh Fire) have also earned wildcard deals on the back of impressive Blast seasons, as have Freddie Klaassen (Manchester Originals) and Ben Raine (Northern Superchargers).
The two London clubs, Oval Invincibles and London Spirit, have opted for younger players: the Invincibles have signed Kent wicketkeeper-batter Jordan Cox, while the Spirit have signed Middlesex seamer Blake Cullen, who impressed Eoin Morgan in the early stages of the Blast.
Raine, who has taken nine wickets and conceded 7.45 runs an over this season, was the first man picked up in the draft following a random draw.
"There were a few nerves flying around leading up to this because I think every cricketer in the country wanted to be in the Hundred," he said. "I thought I'd had a decent Vitality Blast with the ball so I was hopeful of getting a spot.
"Looking through our team there will be a real Northern feel to it which will be nice. There's a lot of Durham lads that I've played with and Yorkshire lads I've played against so there will be a bit of familiarity. It's a good sign for the amount of talent in the region and I'm very proud to be picked up by the Northern team.
Four other domestic players were also confirmed as replacements on Friday: Jordan Thompson replaced Olly Stone (injured) at Northern Superchargers; Sam Hain and Ollie Robinson replaced Wayne Madsen (injured) and Harry Gurney (retired) at Manchester Originals; and Will Smeed replaced Henry Brookes (injured) at Birmingham Phoenix.
The news means disappointment for a number of county players, including Middlesex's Stephen Eskinazi, the leading run-scorer in the Blast and second in the run charts last season. Chris Dent, Arron Lilley, Jack Leaning and Ed Pollock are among the batters to have been overlooked, while bowlers Graeme White, Dan Moriarty, Gavin Griffiths and Matt Milnes all missed out.
There is still a possibility that a handful of unsigned domestic players will end up being involved in the competition. Teams will be able to sign partial replacements for players who are named in England's Test squad to India and do not have red-ball central contracts - which will potentially include Mark Wood and Craig Overton - and there are injury doubts over a number of players with Hundred deals including Tom Abell, Pat Brown, Richard Gleeson and Liam Plunkett.
Wildcard signings: Ben Raine (Northern Superchargers), Jordan Cox (Oval Invincibles), Sam Cook (Trent Rockets), Jake Lintott (Southern Brave), Freddie Klaassen (Manchester Originals), Blake Cullen (London Spirit), Leus du Plooy (Welsh Fire), Dillon Pennington (Birmingham Phoenix)

Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98