Sussex Secure Bopara’s Signature

Sussex Secure Bopara’s Signature

All-rounder Ravi Bopara has agreed to join Sussex for all formats of cricket after ending his 17-year spell with Essex. The 34-year-old, who has 12,821 runs and 257 wickets from 221 matches, including 31 centuries, throughout his career, has been signed to feature in the County Championship Division Two in 2020.

However, it is Bopara’s ability in white-ball cricket that has made him an attractive proposition for Sussex and their head coach Jason Gillespie. He was named Essex’s T20 player of the year after averaging 48.50 in the Vitality Blast, with a strike-rate of over 162.

Bopara’s unbeaten 36 from just 22 balls was central to victory over Worcestershire Rapids in the final last month. He also helped the county win one-day competitions in 2005, 2006 and 2008. Gillespie said on the Sussex website: “I’m really, really excited about having Ravi Bopara join us at Sussex.

Related: All-Rounder Agrees Glamorgan Switch

“It’s a bit of a coup for us to be perfectly honest: what a wonderful player Ravi has been for England and Essex for a long, long time. “His knowledge and experience are going to be invaluable in our dressing room. “He’s a great lad and we’re very thankful that Ravi has decided to join us.

Players and coaches alike are excited to work with him and learn from him.” Bopara, who is England’s 16th most capped player in the T20 format with 38 appearances and has 120 ODIs under his belt, added: “On a personal note I have a burning desire to achieve greater things in this wonderful game. I will now put a greater emphasis on T20 cricket.

I am fitter and stronger than I have ever been and playing my best cricket. “I want to emphasise that I am not giving up red-ball cricket but I will, for now, play less of it to find time in the calendar year to up-skill in T20 and take my game to a new level as I still have a drive to play international cricket.”

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