With the start of the domestic cricket season just days away now the signing that has most caught the eye in the Capital is that of Scotland cap Majid Haq by RH Corstorphine.
Thirty-four-year-old Haq, the spinning all rounder, has made more than 200 appearances for his country and just last summer led Clydesdale to the Western Premier Division and Scottish Cup double.
However, he was keen for a change of scenery and having played most of his cricket in the West the player has decided to link-up with the Barnton-based Baillie Gifford ESCA Championship outfit.
Explaining the move to the second tier in the East, Haq said: “At the turn of the year I started to focus on the 2017 season and I was keen to try something new.
“I have played for many years in the West, but I have always enjoyed my tussles with clubs from the East.
“I was lucky enough to have a few offers, but it was the chance to join RH Corstorphine that really caught my attention and I liked the enthusiasm shown by the likes of Arnie Sathiy and Jim McFadyen to get me here.
“The young skipper of the first XI, Joe Kinghorn-Gray, also spoke very well about his vision for the club and the real emphasis on youth that there is at the club.
“All of those factors made it an easy decision and I am feeling refreshed after a winter off and I am raring to go with my new team-mates.”
Last summer RH Corstorphine were pipped to the Championship title by SMRH and as such they have designs on winning it this time around and then reaching the top flight via the play-off system.
Certainly the addition of the very experienced Haq will help with that and his quality spin bowling has only further bolstered what was already a good bowling attack.
He is also likely to weigh in with some useful runs and on Sunday he scored his first half century for the club in a friendly against Stoneywood-Dyce.
Haq’s experience will also help Kinghorn-Gray and the other younger players around him as RH Corstorphine prepare to go into most league matches as favourites.
This coming Saturday they make the trip to Kirkhill to face Stuart&Stuart Penicuik in their opener while it will also be fascinating to see Haq come up against top flight clubs like Heriot’s and Watsonians in the Murgitroyd Masterton Trophy in May.
“For me everything is exciting about this move,” Haq said. “From what I have seen in the nets there are some cracking young cricketers here including a number of very good spinners so we should have quite a good spin attack when it comes to the league games.
“As someone who has played quite a bit of cricket over the years at a higher level I will try and help the young players along in games should they need it while Joe knows he can come to me for advice if he needs it.
“However, really I just want to be one of the lads and enjoy my cricket in a new setting. Last year the team went close to finishing top, but could not quite manage it and I can sense a real determination in the group to make sure of top spot this time around.
“We know it will not be easy though because there are some good teams and individual players in the Championship and they will be out to take the scalp of RH Corstorphine so we have to be wary, focus on our own game and try and get of to a solid start this weekend.”