Sri Lankan star Jeevan Mendis signs for Derbyshire

JEEVAN Mendis has become Derbyshire's latest overseas signing.
JEEVAN Mendis has become Derbyshire's latest overseas signing.

Sri Lankan all-rounder Jeevan Mendis has become the latest big-name signing by Derbyshire under the new regime of director of cricket, Kim Barnett.

The 33-year-old Mendis has been snapped up to play in the first half of the season before the club’s second overseas recruit, South African leg-spinner Imran Tahir, joins at the end of the ICC Champions Trophy in June.

Mendis will feature in the opening games of the Specsavers County Championship, Second Division and also the group and knockout stages of the Royal London One-Day Cup, which are scheduled to take place from April to June.

With the ball, the experienced leg-spinner has claimed 225 first-class wickets at an average of 26, in addition to a further 170 wickets in white-ball cricket.

With the bat, he has scored 6,397 first-class runs at an average of 36, including 15 centuries and an unbeaten double-hundred. He has also hit more than 4,500 runs in the white-ball formats.

Mendis has competed in 70 fixtures for Sri Lanka since making his debut in 2010.

Barnett said: “Jeevan is another highly experienced international spin bowler who will strengthen our squad for the first part of the season.

“He is a seasoned matchwinner who will also help our talented youngsters, and we’re excited to have him with us. We hope Jeevan can play an important role as we look for a good start to both competitions.”

Mendis said: “I’m excited about the opportunity to play county cricket for Derbyshire next summer. I am looking forward to meeting the players and helping the club make a good start to the new season.”