Somerset’s Director of Cricket Matt Maynard has confirmed that Michael Leask is a Somerset player.
Strangely this has happened with no fanfare: there has been no official announcement from the club or headlines on Newsnow about the signing of the Scottish international, who will line up with his new county club mate Josh Davey for Scotland in the World Cup in India in March. But Leask signed on at the Cooper Associates County Ground a few weeks ago now.
Speaking to the club’s official site in a video that was broadcast on 24th February Maynard said of Aberdeen born Leask: “Young off-spinner/batsman, a good striker of the ball, lower order batsman.”
He also described the 25 year-old: “Good little cricketer, feisty, a pretty strong character! It will be interesting to see if he puts pressure on the first team bowlers this year but I see this year primarily being a learning curve in the second XI but the opportunity is there.”
Leask and Davey will head back to Taunton ready for the start of the new season just as soon as Scotland’s involvement in the World Cup is over.
It would appear that Leask will play more of a part in white ball cricket than the red ball stuff for his new team and he is a player of potential rather than proven ability. His career statistics are not sparkling and he has had a modest time with Scotland recently. He has passed 50 just twice with a highest score of 50 in List A Cricket and 58 in the Twenty20 format.
But the talent is there and he has had some bright moments for his country. The most memorable was a player of the match performance in May 2014 against England in his home town where Scotland gave their visitors a bit of a scare. Leask smashed 42 off just 16 deliveries including 5 sixes and 2 fours, and was eventually dismissed by James Tredwell, the unfortunate victim of most of Leask’s maximum blow’s.
Leask played one game for Northants in 2014 in a List A match against the touring New Zealanders, taking 1 for 56 but not featuring with the bat.
Maynard has shown that he is not nervous about signing unattached players and then throwing them into the first eleven as he demonstrated with Adam Hose in 2015. The youngster from the Isle of Wight was the top scorer for the seconds and made his Somerset debut in a rain affected 50-over game on 26th July against Derbyshire and played a further seven times scoring 168 runs in total.
His arrival in Somerset may have been somewhat under the radar but let’s hope Leask enjoys playing at Taunton and his reputation for big-hitting is fully visible for all.
Welcome to Somerset County Cricket Club Michael Leask.