New-boy Johann Myburgh set for Durham debut

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NEW signing Johann Myburgh is set to make his Durham debut tonight when Geoff Cook’s men face rivals Yorkshire in their opening Twenty20 clash of the season at Headingley (5.40pm start).

The South African, pictured, joined the Dynamos on a month-long deal yesterday, and is expected to be thrown straight into the action this evening after being named in a 13-man squad.

Cook has moved to bolster his squad due to a number of injuries to his slow bowlers.

Off-spinner Gareth Breese has an Achilles injury, slow left-armer Ian Blackwell has a problem with his back, while Paul Collingwood is set to miss all of Durham’s T20 group games with a broken hand.

On top of that, one-day and T20 skipper Dale Benkenstein is still recovering from a dislocated shoulder, which means he is having difficulty bowling at the moment.

Cook was pleased to get his man, and says the short-term deal will allow the county to take a closer look at the ex-Hampshire all-rounder.

“It’s great to have Johann join us for the duration of the T20 competition,” he said.

“We will have a look at him in the T20, and see where we go from there.

“He has a great attitude, and I was impressed by his performance for us this week (Myburgh played in two T20 second XI clashes against Lancashire), not just with the bat but in the field too.

“With Paul Collingwood injured he is an experienced batsmen to add that extra dimension to our batting line-up, and also offers us an extra bowling option.”

Cook admits he has been aware of Myburgh’s availability for some time, but only chose to make his move after injuries took their toll on his squad.

He said: “We played against him last year and he impressed me then,” he said.

“There was a circular released towards the end of last year informing people of his availability, and there was a bit of interest then in my own mind, but we were OK for numbers then.

“He’s been living in London since he was released by Hampshire, hoping to get an opportunity like this.”

Myburgh is delighted to have made the move to the Emirates ICG, and is looking to help them to success in the shortest form of the game.

He said: “It’s been a great few days with Durham already, and I’m looking forward to getting started in the T20.

“I felt in good shape in the warm up games, and scored a few runs, so hopefully I can continue to perform well and post some good scores for the team.

“I know Durham have big aspirations in the competition after reaching the quarter-finals last year, and I want to be contributing to more success.”

Durham welcome back Graham Onions from England duty for tonight’s clash, while overseas pro Herschelle Gibbs will make his Dynamos debut.

Durham (from): Phil Mustard, Herschelle Gibbs, Ben Stokes, Johann Myburgh, Dale Benkenstein, Gordon Muchall, Scott Borthwick, Liam Plunkett, Mitchell Claydon, Chris Rushworth, Graham Onions, Mark Stoneman, Callum Thorp.