Worcestershire captain Daryl Mitchell has signed a new contract that will keep him at New Road for another four years, just weeks after leading the club to promotion from Division Two of the County Championship, reports the BBC.
The local lad – who made his debut for Worcestershire in 2005 – still had two years remaining with the county, but he has now committed to staying until 2018.
Last season, the opening batsman scored a personal-best 1,334 runs in the four-day game as his side finished second in the division behind Hampshire.
Mitchell has only represented one side in English domestic cricket since making his first-class debut back in 2005. In that time he has scored more than 11,000 runs for
Worcestershire and taken 137 wickets with his gentle right-arm medium pace.
Since 2010, the right-hand batsman has been the club’s captain as well, finally returning the side to the top flight of the County Championship at the end of this summer.
It was a great campaign for the 30-year-old, which included five hundreds in the longer
format. And now he will once again ply his trade in Division One of the Championship – for the first time since 2012.
Worcestershire may have been pipped to the title by Hampshire during the final round of fixtures, but they will still take promotion nonetheless. An innings and 92-run hammering
at the hands of third-placed Essex in their last game meant that they relented their hold of top spot.
But the midlands county had been in the ascendency for most of the season, winning eight games – the best of anyone in the division.
Mitchell’s runs were vital at the top of the order, whilst Saeed Ajmal’s 63 wickets in the first half of the season set the side well on their way towards a return to Division One.
However, Worcestershire have only ever avoided relegation from the top tier of English four-day cricket once. If they are to repeat the achievement of the 2011 campaign, they need to ensure that they keep their best players.
And they have done just that by keeping Mitchell at the club for the considerable future. With it clear that the captain is staying put, his teammates will be a lot more confident and settled heading into the new season.
England all-rounder Moeen Ali has already stated his ambition to play for the county next season, showing the appeal that cricket at New Road holds for international stars.
With a few signings to bolster the ranks, Worcestershire will be hoping to hold their own in Division One next year.