‘The Duke’ joins Durham

John Hastings.

John Hastings.

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DURHAM County Cricket Club have bolstered their squad with the signing of Australian international John Hastings.

Hastings will join the club as overseas player for the 2014 season, as the men from the Emirates ICG look to defend their County Championship crown.

Hastings, who is known as “The Duke” will be available for all forms of cricket.

That will be a massive boost to a depleted Durham squad, who parted company with a numberof experienced first teamers at the end of last season.

And with Ben Stokes likely to be away on internaional duty for most of the summer, albeit the al-rounder is currently out of action with damaged hand, having punched a dressing room door while playing for England.

A strong bowling all-rounder, Durham hope Hastings will bring real experience with the ball, and firepower to the lower order with the bat.

The 28-year-old made his Australia debut in 2010, and has played 11 One Day Internationals, three International T20s, and has his baggy green after playing a Test for Australia against South Africa in 2012.

Speaking about the county’s new signing, first-team coach Jon Lewis said: “We are excited about the arrival of John, he is skilful with the ball, and can also contribute well with the bat.

“He will be a strong addition with the red and white ball, and we look forward to welcoming him to Durham”

Hastings will join up with Durham following his commitments in the Indian Premier League with the Chennai Superkings, one of the IPL’s most successful franchises.

Despite coming through the New South Wales coaching system Hastings moved to Victoria and made his First Class debut in 2007.

He boasts some impressive stats in First Class cricket with 119 wickets for Victoria at only 26.00, and has represented Melbourne Stars in the Big Bash.