South African seamer to play all formats after leaving Worcestershire when Kolpak deals ended
Wayne Parnell will join Northamptonshire as an overseas player in all formats for the 2021 season.
Parnell, the South African left-arm seamer, will be available to play in the County Championship, Vitality Blast and Royal London Cup after his time at Worcestershire came to an end last year with the closure of the Kolpak pathway.
“I am delighted to be joining Northants for the 2021 season,” Parnell said. “I love county cricket and I hope I can contribute to the club being successful on all fronts.”
He joins Afghanistan’s Mohammad Nabi as the club’s two overseas players and David Ripley, the head coach, revealed that the chance to sign Parnell had forced the club to rethink its initial strategy for overseas recruitment after securing Nabi for the T20 Blast.
“We started the winter looking for someone who could perhaps play some Championship cricket at the start and then have a different player to support Mohammad Nabi for the T20s.” Ripley said. “We had one or two options there but when Wayne came into the picture we felt he could offer a real all-round contribution for us.”
Parnell, 31, played the last of his six Tests for in 2017, when he also last represented South Africa in ODIs and T20Is.
“He bowls left-arm with some good pace, he can bat, he’s bowled some big pressure overs for Worcester in the T20s and made the finals there twice with them bowling at the death,” Ripley added. “So in white-ball cricket it’s a massive tick but he’s got desire to play red-ball cricket too and that was the most important thing.
“We’ll manage his workload through that along with our other bowlers, as the Championship games come thick and fast at the start of the season but I feel it’s going to be a really good all-round addition to the squad.”
Josh Cobb, Northamptonshire’s T20 captain, said: “With the way international cricket is at the minute it can be hard to get players who are available for big chunks of the competition. So to have two overseas players for 14 games each is huge because you can build some momentum up and hopefully get on a run towards the back end of the group and really attack the finals.”
Parnell is set to arrive in the UK later this month and will be available for selection in the club’s opening Championship fixture at home against Kent on April 8.