Fri, 29 Sep 2023

Wellington [New Zealand], November 25 (ANI): New Zealand opener Martin Guptill has signed with the Melbourne Renegades for the 2022 Big Bash League (BBL) season just days after being released from his New Zealand contract.

After the Melbourne Stars roped in Trent Boult in the overseas player draft in August, Guptill has joined the list of New Zealanders who have been freed from their national contracts to play in the BBL.

Like Boult, Guptill has not left New Zealand cricket, but he has chosen not to sign a contract in order to have more freedom to play in T20 franchise competitions.

He joins Renegades as a replacement for Liam Livingstone, who withdrew from the competition entirely after being selected for England's Test squad due to his increased international commitment. Livingstone was the top pick in the overseas pick.

Beginning on December 28, Guptill will play the final 10 games of the regular season. Andre Russell will take Livingstone's spot for the first four games of the season.

The Kiwi batter expressed his excitement to play for the BBL team and termed his next assignment as a challenge he is looking forward to.

"I'm excited to be joining the Renegades and am looking forward to being part of the Big Bash this season. This is a new challenge for me, and it will be nice to call Melbourne home for the summer. I'll be trying to make as many runs as I can to help drive the Renegades back up the ladder and push for team success. I've crossed paths with a few of the guys over the years on the international circuit and know this will be a great team environment to be part of. I can't wait to join up with the team after Christmas and play in front of plenty of Renegades fans at Marvel Stadium [Docklands] and in Geelong," Guptill said as quoted by ESPNcricinfo.

Guptill has participated in one BBL game, representing Sydney Thunder in the 2012 Sydney Derby.

"We're delighted to have a player of Martin's calibre joining the Renegades and we're excited that he has chosen to play for our club. Martin's record over a long period of time in the shortest form of the game for New Zealand and in domestic competitions around the world speaks for itself. We know Martin will add a wealth of experience and knowledge to our playing group and look forward to seeing what he can produce in red," Renegades General Manager James Rosengarten said.

"Signing Martin and Andre over the past month has been a great outcome for our club. With Andre playing the first four matches and Martin joining us from there, we now have a world-class player available for the duration of the tournament which will help give us every chance of success in BBL 12," he added. (ANI)

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