Leicestershire snap up Rossouw for Blast

Rilee Rossouw will provide cover for Umar Akmal © AFP

Leicestershire has further strengthened its plans for NatWest T20 Blast with the signing of powerful South Africa batsman Rilee Rossouw.

He will play in the final six NatWest T20 Blast group games of the summer to provide cover for Umar Akmal, who is playing in the Caribbean Premier League.

Rossouw’s first game will be against Derbyshire Falcons at the Fischer County Ground on July 8.

Rossouw is a key figure in South Africa’s T20 setup and is in the Proteas’ 15-man squad for the ICC World Twenty20 tournament in India. He has made a big impression on the international scene with a T20I average of 34.55 and a hugely impressive strike rate of 145.32. He has also scored two ODI centuries and averages 33.07 on the world scene in that particular format.

In a T20 career that has spanned 84 games, Rossouw has scored more than 2,000 runs and has maintained a strike rate above 130. Those figures include a spell in the India Premier League in 2012 when Rossouw played alongside Leicestershire’s elite performance director Andrew McDonald for Royal Challengers Bangalore.

McDonald said: “Rilee is a player that I know very well and he’ll be a fantastic addition to our squad both in terms of talent and temperament. He is a powerful batsman and having another left-hander in our batting line-up will prove to be useful.

“Umar made a massive impact for us while providing cover for Grant Elliott in 2015 and it’s great that we’ll now have cover for Umar when he goes to play in the Caribbean Premier League in July. Rilee is an ideal player to bring in and it’s great that we’ll have two overseas players available throughout the tournament.”

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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