Harris relishing Gillespie link-up during Kent loan

Harris relishing Gillespie link-up during Kent loan

James Harris can’t wait to link up with former team-mate Jason Gillespie as he looks to reinvigorate his career on loan at Kent.

The seamer found first-team opportunities hard to come by in Middlesex’s Championship-winning season and with Steven Finn likely to spend most of the year in domestic action, a two-month deal taking him to Canterbury makes sense for both parties.

Gillespie is also on an interim contact with the Division Two outfit and Harris is looking forward to working with a former colleague.

“I know Jason well. We played together for a year at Glamorgan at the back end of his career and towards the start of mine,” he said.

“He’s a great man. I loved spending time with him. Matt (Walker, head coach) is a great guy. I know him relatively well having played against him and been around the circuit for a fair while.

“Allan (Donald) will come in which is a great coup for them as a club.”

Kent will be getting a bowler buoyed by a good showing in the Champion County game out in Abu Dhabi, where Harris took five wickets in the match at just under ten apiece.

Harris put pen to paper on the move on Tuesday and in his initial talks with the county, their desire for promotion to the top tier of the four-day game were abundantly clear.

“Finishing second and not being promoted hurt them last year,” he revealed.

“In any other normal year, they’d be in Division One. I’m excited about where they can go. I’ve been down there and had a few chats with them, they’re excited about that team as well.

“They’re keen to push forward after last year and to get up there.”

The Welshman has a deal in place to stay with the Spitfires until the end of the Royal London One-Day Cup, with the option of either immediate recall to HQ or a loan extension.

The 26 year-old admits that playing second eleven cricket is not in anyone’s interest; neither his nor his parent club’s.

“There hasn’t been much of an opportunity to push out on guys who are likely to start against Hampshire next week,” he said.

“Taking wickets down at Kent is going to count more than second-team wickets, in terms of me getting back into the team at Middlesex.

“At my age, having played as much cricket as I have done, I need to be playing first-class cricket really.

“I am, up to a point, taking guys places in the seconds who need to play at that level of cricket more than I do.

“I’m very much looking forward to the opportunity and getting cracking.”


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