Monty Panesar has agreed a new contract with Sussex which he also hopes will help him achieve an England Test recall. In the meantime, he has also revealed a new ambition.
The 29-year-old left-arm spinner took 69 wickets in his first season of Division One cricket to help Sussex finish fifth, their best finish since they won the title in 2007.
He has now taken 121 first-class wickets since arriving at Hove in 2010 and this deal will keep him at the county until the end of the 2015 season.
Panesar hasn’t played Test cricket since his heroics with Jimmy Anderson helped save the first Ashes Test at Cardiff in July 2010 but hopes consistent performances for his county will help him revive his international career.
He said: “The club is going through an exciting period and I’m looking forward to helping them challenge for trophies. I aim to repay their faith by continuing my good form in all formats of the game while also improving my chances of reclaiming my place in the England side.”
Panesar has agreed to play grade cricket in Sydney this winter for Randwick Petersham and heads to Australia having been named Championship Player of the Season at Sussex’s end-of-season awards last week.
After collecting the trophy Panesar, who has worked hard to improve his fielding after it was lampooned earlier in his career, revealed an unusual ambition for next season – to field at slip!
He said: “When I’m down at third man or fine leg I hear all the banter in the slips and I’m always intrigued as to what they are saying. So the only way to be part of it is to field in the slips myself!”