Author: Dafydd Jones
Glamorgan have announced the signing of Ireland Test captain Andrew Balbirnie as an overseas player for the start of the 2021 season.
Balbirnie will provide cover for Australian star Marnus Labuschagne, as the domestic season is extended due to the pandemic.
The talismanic Labuschagne will arrive at Sophia Gardens when the domestic season ends in Australia.
At international level, Balbirnie has three Test caps for Ireland, scoring 82 against Afghanistan in 2019 and a half-century at Lord’s against England.
The batsman returns to Sophia Gardens having represented Glamorgan in the Vitality Blast last season.
“It’s a brilliant opportunity to play red-ball cricket and the County Championship is historically one of the best first-class competitions in the world,” said Balbirnie.
“I really enjoyed my time in Wales last season. The players and coaches were incredibly welcoming and it’s a great place to play.
“I’m really excited to go back, get stuck in and hopefully contribute to some wins for Glamorgan.”
Director of cricket, Mark Wallace said, “It’s disappointing Marnus will miss the first few games of the season but we’re very happy to get someone the calibre of Balbo in on such short notice.
“As he showed last year, he’s a fine player and has a good track record across all formats and experience playing at the very highest level.
“He was fantastic for us when he joined last year and will bring plenty of skill and leadership to our side.
“Michael Neser plays with Marnus at Queensland and his arrival has also been delayed so we’re currently looking at other options for the early stages of the season.”
(Featured Image: Glamorgan Cricket Club)