Yorkshire pair Martyn Moxon and Andrew Gale today revealed their delight at the show-stopping capture of Aaron Finch.
Although signing him to play in Twenty20 cricket is arguably the most exciting part of the deal for Yorkshire supporters, the opportunity to play some four-day cricket was key for the 27-year-old Australian.
Finch is one of the world’s best limited overs cricketers, as will be highlighted today when he commands a mega-money contract to play in the Indian Premier League.
But he has big ambitions to play Test cricket for his country in the near future. And to do that, he must improve on a record which sees him average just over 28 in first-class cricket.
”I think two or three other counties (were interested), but the biggest thing was playing some four-day cricket,” explained captain Gale, who had lunch with the player during his recent spell playing grade cricket in Melbourne.
“I saw him in the Big Bash when he captained the Renegades, and I went out for lunch with him over there to see what he’s like as a character really.
“Over the last few years one of our biggest assets has been that we’ve had everybody driving towards the same direction. We’ve got a very strong dressing room, and getting the right characters is key. He’s a good lad.”
Asked whether he helped to clinch the deal, Gale quipped: “No, I didn’t. I just bought him a hamburger.”
Director of cricket Moxon stressed that signing the right-hander was not a “budget buster”, admitting that Finch has a strong desire to play for Yorkshire.
“It’s not a budget buster by any means, and I’m sure Aaron could have got more elsewhere,” he said.
“That’s the beauty of this. He’s shown he’s keen to play for Yorkshire, and we’ve only got a certain amount of money that we can spend. He’s happy to come for that. That shows that he’s keen to play for Yorkshire, and it’s not just about the money.
“From our point of view, he’s going to be keen to do well for us in all forms of the game and not just T20. It should work in our favour.
“We had a decent season last year, although not so good in one-day cricket. That’s an area we’re looking to improve, hence why we’ve signed Aaron. It’s to help us improve our one-day form from last year.
“The time that Aaron’s going to be here is a big part of T20 cricket. Yeah sure there’s going to be four or five Championship games, which are clearly important, but I would expect him to contribute well in those as well.
“He’s obviously a very attacking batsman, and hopefully in four-day cricket he can take games away from the opposition as well as he can in T20.”
Meanwhile, Moxon has ruled himself out of the race to replace Andy Flower as England’s new team director after reports linking him with the role.
He said: “No, I’m very happy here. I want Yorkshire to be successful and help build a squad of players that’s successful over a period of time with Yorkshire. I’ve got plenty of work to do here, and I’m looking forward to it.”