Glos give Marshall leave to miss opener

Hamish Marshall has been given permission to miss Gloucestershire’s opening LV=County Championship game of the season against Derbyshire at Bristol, starting on April 8.

But New Zealand’s semi-final exit from the World Cup should ensure that Kane Williamson arrives at the county to take up his duties as overseas player in time for the Derbyshire match.

Marshall is back home in New Zealand where he has been playing for Northern Districts in preparation for a full summer of county cricket. He got married recently and has now been given leave to stay longer than originally anticipated to attend the weddings of his two brothers.

Gloucestershire director of cricket John Bracewell explained: “Hamish’s twin brother is getting married and to complete the hat-trick his elder brother is also tying the knot so we have given him an extension of leave.

“As things stand, he is the only player who won’t be available for our opening game so we have plenty to think about selection-wise.”

Gloucestershire are in the process of sorting out a visa for Williamson, who was on the losing side in the World Cup semi-final against Sri Lanka in Colombo.

Skipper Alex Gidman said: “We are hoping Kane will be able to come to us straight from Asia, rather than having to go home to New Zealand first. If that can be arranged we should have him here in time for the Derbyshire match.”

Meanwhile, Keith Gerrish has decided to step down after 15 years as Gloucestershire scorer and will be replaced by Adrian Bull for the coming season. In an exchange of roles, Gerrish will take over as second XI scorer from Bull.

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