Nicholas Pooran, the West Indian batsman, has been signed by Yorkshire Vikings for the next season of Vitality Blast, it was confirmed on Wednesday (November 6). Pooran will be available for most of Yorkshire’s North Group games during the tournament, subject to international commitments.
Pooran, who had an impressive run during the World Cup earlier this year, said he is glad to represent the Vikings in the Vitality Blast. He’s also excited to return to Headingley after his recent stint where the southpaw played a few match-defining knocks.
“I’m very happy to be returning to Headingley for next season’s T20 Blast. I really enjoyed my short stint there after the World Cup and feel I have a bit of unfinished business with the weather winning in a couple of the games I was scheduled to play in 2019,” said Pooran on his signing.
Pooran has a pretty good record in the shortest format and is known for his power-hitting, batting in the middle order. He played a crucial role for the Guyana Amazon Warriors in the recently-concluded Caribbean Premier League where the Warriors were unbeaten in the league stage, winning 10 matches on the trot. The aggressive left-hander also played a blistering knock of 67 to power the Vikings to a gigantic score of 255/2 against Leicestershire during the Vitality Blast in July this year – one of the highlights of the season.
Yorkshire County Cricket Club’s First XI Coach (Andrew Gale) rates Nicholas Pooran highly as a player and reckons he can be a match winner on his day.
“We all got a glimpse of what a special player he is (last season), he is box office. In T20 cricket, you always look down the team sheet to see who can win you a game, and Pooran is a guy that can win you a game on his own,” Gale said.
“We brought Nicholas in for what we could afford last year. With more funds available, we wanted to bring somebody in for a longer period of time. To get him for a major chunk of the competition is a big plus for us.”
Apart from Pooran, Dawid Malan was also signed by the club earlier this week and Gale thinks both the left-handers will add a lot of value to the team. “In both players, you are getting proven players in the T20 format, and proven match-winners,” Gale added. “It certainly gives us lots more experience in our line-up.”
Yorkshire were on the losing side in a few close encounters during the Vitality Blast and Gale thinks the amalgamation of these two left-handers will help them deal with the pressure situations.
“I felt that last year, we missed out on close games when the pressure was on. At the back end of games, we couldn’t get over the line, and bringing in experienced players helps you with that. It brings a calmness and coolness under pressure. Getting these two guys should give us that calmness.”
Meanwhile, Martyn Moxon (Director of Cricket) at The Yorkshire County Cricket Club said: “We are pleased that it has worked out that way. He is a player with incredible talent and such an explosive player. We feel that he will be a great addition to our T20 Blast squad.”