Opener Marcus Harris joins Victoria

Marcus Harris has four first-class hundreds to his name © Getty Images

Opening batsman Marcus Harris has moved from Western Australia to Victoria and is part of a squad of 31 players named by the Bushrangers for the 2016-17 season. The hefty numbers include five Cricket Australia-contracted players and six rookies, one of whom is the left-arm fast bowler Tom O’Donnell, the son of former Australia allrounder Simon O’Donnell.

Jackson Coleman, 24, is back in the squad having held a rookie contract in 2009-10, before he left cricket to pursue a career as an Australian rules footballer. Victoria chairman of selectors Andrew Lynch said it was pleasing to see Coleman back in the squad.

“Jackson had obvious talent through the youth program for Victoria,” Lynch said. “He was part of the successful Australian Under-19 World Cup squad in 2010 and has performed well last season in both Futures and Premier cricket. As an impressive left-arm quick, towering well over 6ft, he has his best cricket in front of him.”

Aaron Ayre, Seb Gotch, Matthew Short and Guy Walker have all been upgraded from rookie contracts to the full squad, while new rookies include Xavier Crone, Sam Grimwade, Jackson Koop and Blake Thomson. Gone from last year’s list are Ryan Sidebottom, rookie Ben Ashkenazi and the retired Clint McKay and Chris Rogers.

Harris, 23, has already played 42 first-class games and scored four centuries, but managed only six Sheffield Shield appearances for the Warriors in 2015-16 for 274 runs at 27.40. He made his first-class debut at the age of 18, back in 2010-11, and will join a Victoria outfit that next summer will be the reigning champions in the Sheffield Shield.

“Harris is a young player who has proven himself at first-class level,” Lynch said. “We are looking forward to Marcus joining our group of talented young batsmen.”

Victoria squad Fawad Ahmed, Aaron Ayre, Scott Boland, Daniel Christian, Jackson Coleman, Travis Dean, Aaron Finch (Cricket Australia contract), Sebastian Gotch, Peter Handscomb, Marcus Harris, John Hastings (CA), Ian Holland, Jon Holland, Glenn Maxwell (CA), James Muirhead, James Pattinson (CA), Rob Quiney, Jake Reed, Matthew Short, Peter Siddle (CA), Marcus Stoinis, Chris Tremain, Matthew Wade, Guy Walker, Cameron White.
Rookies Xavier Crone, Sam Grimwade, Sam Harper, Jackson Koop, Tom O’Donnell, Blake Thomson.

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Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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