Northants confident Jack White can be another pace bowling gem

Jack White has signed a new one-year contract with Northants
Jack White has signed a new one-year contract with Northants

Northants head coach David Ripley is hoping the club has unearthed another hidden pace bowling gem following the news that Jack White has signed a new one-year contract at the County Ground.

The 27-year-old was part of the squad last season and did feature in the seconds, but failed to make a first team appearance due to a series of frustrating injuries.

The County's track record of kick-starting and rejuvenating fast bowlers' careers has been good in recent years, with the likes of Jack Brooks, Richard Gleeson and Ben Sanderson making the most of chances given to them at Wantage Road.

And Ripley is confident that White could be the next one to make the breakthrough at a relatively late stage in his career.

“Jack had some injury issues last year but when we saw him fit and firing, he’s a very fine seam bowling prospect," said the County's head coach.

"He’s a little bit similar to Ben Sanderson in many ways, very skilful and hits the seam, he’s a very English style seam bowler."

White, who is originally from the Lake District and has played minor counties cricket for Cheshire, actually caught the County's scouts' eye while playing grade cricket in Australia.

And it was the impression he had clearly made on some of Australia's international stars with during that time that ensured Ripley kept a close eye on the player.

"Jack's arrived with us through a different route and he reminds me a bit of Jack Brooks," said Ripley, who gave Brooks the chance to step up from minor counties cricket with Oxfordshire to make his way in the first-class game, and he has since gone on to star for Northants, Yorkshire and Somerset.

"Phil Rowe had seen him (White) a couple of years ago and kept in touch.

"What was noticeable is when we played Australia A (in a one-day match in June) and Jack was around, the number of guys who played against him when he had two or three really successful years playing club cricket in Australia, they had a lot of time for him and respect for what they’d seen of him.

"I thought that was a really good sign and very interesting as he was still a little unknown to us.

"He’s an older cricketer in terms of someone having their first stab at professional cricket.

"He’s not your archetypal lad off the academy or young prospect, but his age is almost irrelevant because the miles on the clock are low.

"We’re very excited and I’m sure he’s not going to let anybody down."