Harmison eager for fresh start at Kent

Thursday 22nd December 2011

Men’s First Team

Kent’s new signing Ben Harmison agreed to join the county looking for a freshstart in his professional career.

The 25 year old all-rounder agreed to sign for Kent last week and will bolster a squadwhich has already seen Charlie Shreck and Mike Powell join the ranks.

With CEO, Jamie Clifford still looking at possible further additions to the squad, along with a new Head Coach, Kent have a bright future with 2012 the potential dawn of a new era at the St Lawrence Ground.

Having agreed to move to Kent, Harmison is looking to forge a name for himself in the game having last played first class cricket for Durham back in 2010:

“I’m delighted to have agreed the deal with Kent as they are a big club and I can’t wait to get Christmas out of the way, get down there and begin training with my new team-mates.”

“I was surprised that Durham decided to let me go at the end of the summer having done well there over the past three or four years. I don’t think I’ve let anyone down there and I’d say I have been one of the better players.”

“I was part of the Championship winning side and I thought I’d get another deal there, but it wasn’t to be. I’m not sure if it is to do with finances at the club and other players signing big deals, but you have got to pick yourself up and move on.”

“When Kent came in for me I was over the moon and now I see it as a case of onwards and upwards.”

The name Harmison is familiar to cricket fans across the world with brother Steve having been part of the Ashes winning side alongside Geraint Jones and Ben has spoken of how his sibling advised him that a move to Kent would be good for his career:

“He was as shocked as anyone when it was announced that I would be leaving Durham. He is good friends with both Geraint and Rob Key and spoke very highly of both of them. He told me that it would be good for my career to work alongside guys like this and my game could only progress by picking their brains.”

“As soon as I spoke to both Rob Key and the Chief Executive, I knew I wanted to play for Kent. When I spoke to Jamie Clifford he told me about the players he wanted to get along with the players that had signed and I was impressed.”

“Charlie Shreck should be a great signing for the club as he is a fantastic bowler with a great record, while Mike Powell has shown what a class batsman he has been at Glamorgan.”

“Both of those players can take the club forward and hopefully I can play my part as well.”

Harmison’s career started with him hitting successive centuries against Oxford University and West Indies A, whilst his bowling has proven to be invaluable at times for Durham, taking eighty wickets.

When asked where he sees himself slotting in the Kent side, Harmison told KSN how he felt he could offer something with both bat and ball:

“I would class myself a genuine all-rounder. I have scored runs and taken wickets, but I will play wherever Kent want to play me as long as I’m playing.”

“I need to get my fitness levels up and we will see what happens once pre-season starts.”

With some people having criticised brother Steve for having felt homesick at timesduring his career, fans might begin to question whether Ben will miss the comforts of life in Durham, but the all-rounder says he doesn't feel that will be a problem for him:

“It’s only about four and a half hours on the train, but it all depends on how much you want something and I’m desperate to play for Kent.”

As for his plans over Christmas, Ben admitted his time will be spent with his tight knit family:

“It will be a bit of a chilled one as we have got a big family up here. We’ll probably all end up at Steve’s and I’m sure it’ll be a bit of a hectic day. It could be the last chance we get to be together for some six or seven months so I am sure we’ll have a good time.”

Ben Harmison was speaking to Steve Wolfe of KSN