Twin Lions aces are Over the moon with new Som­er­set deal

The Cricket Paper - - FEATURE - By Adam El­lis

SOM­ER­SET duo Craig and Jamie Over­ton have put Matthew May­nard’s mind at ease by com­mit­ting to con­tract ex­ten­sions at the Di­vi­sion One rel­e­ga­tion bat­tlers through to 2020.

The 23-year-old twin broth­ers had one year left re­main­ing on their old terms and have re­mained loyal to their county who sit sev­enth in the County Cham­pi­onship.

Ear­marked by the pow­ers that be within the Eng­land set-up for their star po­ten­tial, Craig Over­ton ex­plained his plan to build on cre­den­tials at a club fea­tur­ing a num­ber of promis­ing academy prod­ucts.

“I’m re­ally pleased to have com­mit­ted my fu­ture to Som­er­set,” Craig said. “It’s an ex­cit­ing time for the club and there is a real feel­ing that we are on the verge of some­thing big.

“There are a lot of re­ally good young play­ers here at the mo­ment and hope­fully the squad can re­alise its po­ten­tial and re­ally give the sup­port­ers some­thing to cheer about.”

Pro­vid­ing the seam at­tack to go with the spin of Jack Leach, Som­er­set’s bowl­ing depart­ment has shown topof-the-ta­ble form dur­ing this year’s Cham­pi­onship. But with only one bats­man in Dean El­gar post­ing an av­er­age over 40, the county has been blighted by a lack of runs.

With chal­leng­ing fix­tures against Es­sex and Lan­cashire to come, Jamie Over­ton re­vealed he was rel­ish­ing step­ping back onto the field for a club he and his brother cher­ish.

He said: “It’s great to have signed this ex­ten­sion and I can’t wait to get back out in to the mid­dle for the club that has been a part of my life for so long. It’s amaz­ing to be able come in every day and work with so many qual­ity play­ers.We’re des­per­ate for Som­er­set suc­cess and I’m sure that it’s just a mat­ter of time un­til we achieve some­thing spe­cial.”

Per­sonal achieve­ments have been in no short sup­ply for the duo who both earned call-ups to the Eng­land ODI squad to face New Zealand in 2015, but nei­ther were se­lected for the start­ing XI.

Build­ing on stun­ning form for Som­er­set that year when he took 43 Cham­pi­onship wick­ets at 21.70, Craig Over­ton was in­tro­duced into the Eng­land Lions camp in 2016 where he has con­tin­ued to be coached un­der Eng­land’s de­vel­op­ment pro­gramme – fea­tur­ing against South Africa A ear­lier this year.

Feel­ing the best is yet to come, Som­er­set chief ex­ec­u­tive Lee Cooper com­mented on how the club were priv­i­leged to have play­ers who are not only of high cal­i­bre but were in line with the val­ues held in Taun­ton.

“Craig and Jamie are ex­cep­tion­ally tal­ented play­ers and to have se­cured their long-term fu­tures is a real coup for the club,” Cooper said. “Our pol­icy is to iden­tify, de­velop and back lo­cal tal­ent in or­der to make that the core of any Som­er­set side and the Over­ton broth­ers epit­o­mise ex­actly that.”

Ex­tended deals: Jamie and Craig Over­ton

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