Hampshire sign Ottniel Baartman for six Vitality T20 Blast games

South Africa
Hampshire have signed Ottniel Baartman, the South Africa seamer, for the second half of their Vitality Blast campaign. Baartman replaces Afghanistan’s Naveen-ul-Haq, who has pulled out for personal reasons.

Baartman, 31, has yet to be capped by his country but was named in South Africa’s T20 World Cup squad and could make his debut in their series in the West Indies starting later this week. He played under Adi Birrell, Hampshire’s head coach, for back-to-back SA20 champions Sunrisers Eastern Cape, where he was also a team-mate of Liam Dawson.

“I’m really looking forward to joining up with Hampshire Hawks for my first experience of county cricket,” Baartman said, “it’s great to link back up with Adi Birrell and Liam Dawson who I know well from the SA20. I’ve heard great things about the atmosphere at Utilita Bowl and I can’t wait to get playing in front of the Hawks fans this summer.”

Baartman will take over from Michael Neser, who has signed for the first eight Blast group games, joining Ben McDermott among Hampshire’s overseas options. He will be available for six fixtures in July, starting with the trip to Middlesex, as well as the knockout stages in September if Hampshire progress.

Giles White, Hampshire’s director of cricket, said: “It’s a great boost to the squad that Ottniel is available and keen to join us after the World Cup. He fits the role perfectly and comes off the back of an outstanding domestic summer in South Africa.”

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