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Sam Billings to stay in IPL until next week

Thursday 19th May 2016

Kent wicketkeeper Sam Billings will stay with Delhi Daredevils until the conclusion of their involvement in the Indian Premier League next week.

The England one-day star is in line to return for the NatWest T20 Blast fixture at Hampshire on Thursday 2 June (7pm) before a homecoming at The County Ground, Beckenham on Friday 3 June against Gloucestershire (5.30pm).

Kent Cricket CEO Jamie Clifford said: “Sam has ambitions to play international cricket regularly for England and he feels that exposure to overseas conditions and tournaments is a great way to help develop his talent.

"Delhi Daredavils have performed well in the IPL and are still active in the tournament, which provides that opportunity.

"We agree and we hope to see him back in a Kent shirt very soon to put his experiences into practice for his home county and hopefully, England too this summer."

The 24-year-old Kent Cricket Academy graduate said: "After discussions with the Delhi Daredevils management, Sam Northeast and the coaching staff at Kent, my IPL stint with Delhi has been extended until our final game when I will return to Kent immediately to rejoin the lads and get stuck in straight away.

"I am obviously really gutted to miss the first NatWest T20 Blast match at Canterbury this season but I will be watching and wishing all the guys the best of luck and hopefully we can kick off our T20 campaign positively.

"I would like to thank Kent for allowing me to remain at the IPL for the final stages of the tournament.

"It has been a tough decision as I was really looking forward to returning in time for the T20 at home this week, but after speaking with Rahul Dravid, Paddy Upton and the senior Delhi players the opportunity to be involved in the knockout stages of the IPL was one that I couldn't miss.

"I am hoping I can force my way into the Delhi starting XI for the remaining games and not only experience the intensity of IPL knockout games but also hopefully bring home some silverware.

"I have kept in regular contact with the Kent lads at home and I am really looking forward to joining back up with them."