Cricket: Scots prospect Ruaidhri Smith signs county deal at Glamorgan

Ruaidhri Smith's performances for Scotland Under-19s have earned him a county contract in Wales
Ruaidhri Smith's performances for Scotland Under-19s have earned him a county contract in Wales
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SALTIRES prospect Ruaidhri Smith has been handed a development contract with Glamorgan.

The teenage all-rounder made his representative debut for the national U19s last year after it was discovered he had been born in Glasgow.

Smith made his mark with a debut century during a tour to South Africa and was the fourth top wicket-taker at the Youth World Cup. Brought up in Shrewsbury, he was spotted by Glamorgan several years ago and has been tipped for a successful career in the game.

Craig Wright, Scotland’s Performance Development Manager, said: “I am delighted Ruaidhri has got a deal with Glamorgan. He has been a valuable addition to our squad at U19 level and I have no doubt he is destined for a fine future in the game with Glamorgan and Scotland.”

Matthew Mott, Glamorgan’s Head of Elite Performance, added: “Ruaidhri has been in our system for some time and we are confident that he will have an exciting and successful career. He is a talented young cricketer and importantly also has a good work ethic.”

Meanwhile, Ian Bell wants England to revert to the principles that saw them take a surprise lead in the one-day series against India.

The tourists have had the stuffing knocked out of them in the last two matches, going down by 127 runs and then seven wickets with India hitting a purple patch. The prime problem for England has been the batting, with totals of 158 and 155 contributing to the resounding nature of the defeats.

But while England would be forgiven for thinking the five-match series is drifting away from them, Bell is keen to remind his team-mates that they have already proved themselves on this trip.

The opener in Rajkot saw Bell and Alastair Cook lay the foundations for a much more impressive total of 325 as England claimed their first one-day success in India since 2006.

It is win or bust in match four in Mohali on Wednesday and Bell hopes for a repeat of that early success. “Hopefully we have the opportunity to put in a performance like we did in the first ODI and take it to 2-2,” said Bell. “We went into that first match after losing two warm-ups but we put in a performance. We have to keep believing we can win and we’ve shown we can do that. There’s no doubt we set a platform in the first match. If we get a platform, our middle order is very powerful and destructive.”

As proved in that first match, the opening partnership between Bell and Cook is pivotal to the side’s prospects. Their stand of 158 in Rajkot was England’s highest first-wicket stand in India and paved the way for a more care-free approach as the innings progressed. Since then, India’s rookie seamers – Bhuvneshwar Kumar and Shami Ahmed – have prospered, making swift inroads to heap the pressure on England’s middle-order stroke-makers. England have one more practice session tomorrow to ponder personnel changes for the match. Both captain Cook and coach Ashley Giles have admitted they will consider tweaking the XI, leaving seamer Jade Dernbach and under-pressure wicketkeeper Craig Kieswetter most vulnerable.

Stuart Meaker is Dernbach’s biggest threat, especially if conditions look likely to reward extra pace, and Jos Buttler will be put through his paces behind the stumps in the nets as Kieswetter’s place is debated.