Ambitious Waller flies out for South African winter stint

Somerset leg-spinner Max Waller flew out last night for a five-month winter stint with South African club Rondebosch.

The 23-year-old hopes the spell in Cape Town will bring about the improvement in his game needed to get him into Somerset’s first team at the start of next season.

Waller is hoping to capitalise on the fact that Murali Kartik has ended his association with the county, while overseas replacement Roelof van der Merwe will not arrive until the beginning of June next summer.

Somerset are looking to sign a temporary overseas player to stand in for van der Merwe in the opening County Championship games, but there is no guarantee the signing will be a spinner.

If it is not, Waller and young Ireland left-armer George Dockrell could find themselves competing for a place. Waller took 3 for 41 in two Champions League appearances for Somerset last month and is hoping to further press his claims by doing well in South Africa.

He said: “Professional sport is all about taking opportunities when they come along and Murali Kartik’s absence provides one for me.

“I’m excited about next season already and I want to play cricket and develop my skills, which is why I am going to Cape Town.

“Bowling a lot of overs during the winter will be the best possible preparation for me. I will be playing in a decent standard of cricket and it should be a great experience.”

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