New Zealand pacer Matt Henry’s contract with Kent Cricket for the first seven matches of this season’s County Championship has been mutually withdrawn due to the rapidly-spreading COVID-19 pandemic.The 28-year-old seamer was set to join Kent for a second stint after having played for the club in 2018 but a cricket shutdown in UK until May 28 due to the coronavirus outbreak meant he will no longer will be able to play for the club this season.
“Kent Cricket can confirm that New Zealand International Matt Henry will no longer be joining the Club for the first seven County Championship matches of 2020,” the club said in a statem
Cheteshwar Pujara, Michael Neser, Nathan Lyon contracts also cancelled
Henry thus became the fourth cricketer after Nathan Lyon, Cheteshwar Pujara and Michael Neser to miss out on a stint in county cricket this year due to the deadly disease. Earlier deal between Indian test specialist Cheteshwar Pujara deal with Gloucestershire was called off for the same reason. Pujara signed a deal to play the first six games of the County Championship season in February, and was set to become Gloucestershire’s first Indian player since Javagal Srinath in 1995. But with the first seven rounds of the Championship postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic, and international travel severely limited, his deal by the county was called off
Michael Neser’s agreement with Surrey was also called off for the same reason couple of days back.
Kent’s Director of Cricket, Paul Downton, said: “Once the decision was announced by the ECB that there would be no cricket until at least the end of May it became that overseas cricketers will have little to do this season.
“The Club continues to enjoy a good relationship with Matt. He has many friends here and the overwhelmingly positive feedback we received when we announced he would return in 2020 is a measure of Matt himself: he’s a fantastic person on and off the cricket field. “We’d like to thank Matt for his understanding in difficult circumstances. Hopefully another opportunity will arise in the near future which will allow him to join us once again.
The Black Caps’ next assignment was a tour of Scotland, Ireland, the Netherlands and the West Indies starting in early June to begin preparations for the Twenty20 World Cup in Australia starting in October. But NewZealand Cricket has already announced that all of these tours are in serious doubt, due to government advice and travel restrictions.