Scott Styris is to return to Essex for the county’s Twenty20 campaign next summer and, this time, the New Zealand all-rounder is expecting to be available for the entire competition.
It was contributions from Styris that did much to book the Eagles their place in the knockout stages in 2010. He played 15 group matches and scored 392 runs from 13 innings at an average of 35.64, striking 24 sixes and 23 fours.
However he was forced to miss the quarter-finals and Finals Day having been called-up for by the Black Caps for a triangular series in Sri Lanka. Now the 35 year-old is planning to be part of the squad right the way through to the finals in 2011, should Essex reach that stage.
Styris proved to be a match-winner for the county on more than one occasion in 2010, snatching victory with just four balls to spare when scoring 52 from 26 balls against Sussex at Hove in July.
That followed a scintillating performance the previous month against Surrey that brought the Chelmsford crowd to their feet when he blasted his maiden Friends Provident t20 century. During a whirlwind innings, he reached three figures from only 49 balls with seven sixes and six fours and his 106 not out meant Essex won with one ball to spare.
He also chipped in with 13 wickets at 31.38 with his seam bowling and Essex captain James Foster is delighted to see the influential all-rounder return to the club.
“He showed that he is still a top-drawer player in one-day cricket and we are all looking forward to having him in the side again,” said Foster. “He fitted in perfectly and apart from contributing so much with the bat and ball, his experience and advice was also invaluable.
“I know that Scott feels he has uncompleted business for Essex because he was bitterly disappointed when he knew that he wouldn’t be available for the knockout stages.
“Winning the t20 competition is something that has eluded us so far but with new signing Owais Shah and now Scott in our squad, I believe that we can look forward to a highly successful t20 campaign next summer.”
An experienced Test international with 29 caps to his name, Styris is still a regular member of the New Zealand one-day side having represented his country in 169 one-day internationals and 28 Twenty20 internationals.
Having spent the last five years playing for Auckland, he has now returned to former side Northern Districts for the forthcoming New Zealand season.