Ireland captain Andrew Balbirnie has joined Glamorgan on a short-term deal for the start of the English county cricket season.
The 30-year-old Dubliner will replace Australia's Marnus Labuschagne until the end of April as the Welsh club's designated overseas player.
Balbirnie had previously represented Glamorgan in the T20 Bash and he's looking forward to playing first-class county cricket in the coming weeks.
“It’s a brilliant opportunity to play red-ball cricket, and the County Championship is historically one of the best first-class competitions in the world.”
“I really enjoyed my time in Wales last season in the Vitality Blast - the players and coaches were incredibly welcoming and it’s a great place to play. I’m really excited to go back, get stuck in and hopefully contribute to some wins for Glamorgan.”
Balbirnie will return to Ireland in time for the three-game One Day International Series against the Netherlands in June and Cricket Ireland’s high performance director Richard Holdsworth says it's a good move for their captain.
“A window of opportunity arose with the postponement of the men’s tour to Zimbabwe, and we were happy to agree to Andrew’s move for six weeks to Glamorgan.
"We have a big year ahead of us at both international and domestic levels, with a T20 World Cup in late 2021, so for one of our key players to be able to take advantage of an opportunity to play cricket in April at this standard will be of great benefit.”
“Balbo will be back for the start of the Inter-Provincial Series campaign in early May, then will lead the senior men’s squad into action against the Netherlands in early June.”