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Leicestershire CCC is delighted to announce the signing of Joe Burns, the top-order Queensland and Australia A batsman who will play as an overseas player for a significant part of the 2013 season.
Burns scored 927 runs in the first-class and List A arena in the 2011/12 season, topping Queensland's Sheffield Shield averages with 781 at 41.10 in the process. The 23-year-old also averaged 48.66 after collecting 146 runs in his three List A innings that summer.
Burns has followed that up by making more than 900 runs across the three formats for Queensland, Brisbane Heat and Australia A in another highly promising domestic season this time around
The batsman top-scored with 43 as Brisbane Heat beat Perch Scorchers in this season's KFC Big Bash T20 Final. Burns scored 248 runs in the competition - his first T20 matches at domestic level - at an average of 31.00 and an impressive strike rate of 129.16.
Last month Burns made 114 for Australia A against an England Lions team captained by former Leicestershire favourite James Taylor. The Lions attack on the day consisted of Chris Wright, Stuart Meaker, Craig Overton, Simon Kerrigan, Scott Borthwick and Rikki Clarke.
Burns is looking forward to his spell at Grace Road. He said: "I'm very excited to get the opportunity to join Leicestershire for the 2013 season. In my discussions with the staff of LCCC, I feel this is a fantastic opportunity personally for myself to continue to develop my cricket and to perform at the highest level.
“I've heard great things about the club’s setup and players and I am very motivated with the ambition of promotion in the county championship. I'm looking forward to joining up with the team in May and contributing to a successful and enjoyable season.”
Burns will stand in at Leicestershire for Ramnaresh Sarwan, whose West Indies commitments are expected to restrict his appearances for the Foxes during 2013. Sarwan will play the first five and the last four LV=CC games as well as the YB40 opener against Gloucestershire.
The batsman will arrive on May 15 and leave on August 30, and his spell will comprise seven LV=CC games, the whole of the FL t20 competition and 11 YB40 matches. His first match will be the LV=CC encounter against Glamorgan, and his last will be the final YB40 group game against Middlesex Panthers at Lord’s.
Leicestershire CCC Chief Executive Mike Siddall said: “We are delighted to have signed the up-and-coming batsman Joe Burns. We are hoping he will have a similar impact at Grace Road as previous Australian overseas players, Brad Hodge and Michael Bevan. Joe is on the fringes of the Australian team and will be keen to impress during an Ashes year in England.”
Leicestershire CCC Head Coach Phil Whitticase said: “I am really pleased that Joe is joining Leicestershire. He is a talented batsman with a bright future ahead of him. His availability, before departing for the 2013 Champions League at the end of August, dovetails perfectly with Ronnie Sarwan and we expect both players to make a big impact during the season.”
A stylish batsman who has a very bright future ahead of him, Burns recently joined a long list of international players to have won the Bradman Young Cricketer of the Year Award. All those who have previously won the award have played for Australia in at least one format and include big names such as Darren Lehmann, Ricky Ponting, Brett Lee and Shane Watson.
Burns has a first-class average of 40.62 after scoring 1503 runs in his first 41 innings. The young batsman’s career-best is 140* for home state Queensland; one of four centuries to his name. Burns has made 531 career List A runs at an average of 35.53 and a healthy strike rate of 73.92.