Stirling to stay with Middlesex
Ireland batsman Paul Stirling has committed his future to Middlesex by signing a new three-year contract at Lord’s.
An ever-present in Middlesex’s limited-overs teams for the past two seasons, Stirling, who also bowls handy off-spin, ranks among the most destructive batsmen in the domestic game.
The club’s managing director of cricket, Angus Fraser, expressed his delight at the news, saying: “Paul is without doubt one of the most exciting young cricketers in the world.
“I have watched a lot of cricket in the past 30 years but I have seen very few batsmen strike the ball as cleanly and hit the ball as far as Paul.
“If he is not quite on a par with the likes of Chris Gayle and Kieron Pollard, he is not far behind. On his day he is almost impossible to bowl at, such is the array of strokes he can play.”
Such is his faith in Stirling, Fraser believes the 22-year-old has what it takes to follow in the footsteps of Ed Joyce and Eoin Morgan by representing England.
“It can and should not be long before the England selectors begin enquiring about his availability as he would add a great deal to their one-day and t20 team,” Fraser reasoned.
“Paul is a more than useful off-spin bowler and an excellent fielder too. Most importantly though is he is a cracking young man.”
For the time being, Stirling faces the challenge of breaking into Middlesex’s four-day team.
“Paul has so far made his name in limited-overs cricket but it is our aim to get him into first-class cricket too,” Fraser added.
“We believe he has the ability and potential to be equally destructive in this form of the game.”