'Death' master joins Adelaide

Ben Laughlin signs two-year deal with Strikers

Adam Burnett

25 June 2014, 02:43 PM AEST

Adelaide Strikers have continued to bolster their playing stocks with the acquisition of highly-rated Twenty20 bowler Ben Laughlin.

Laughlin, who was Hobart Hurricanes’ leading wicket-taker in last season’s KFC T20 Big Bash League and second overall in the competition, is highly-regarded for his ‘death’ bowling ability, with many of his 18 wickets in BBL|03 coming in the latter stages of an innings.

“Adelaide offered me a two-year deal, which was really good and exciting, and a great opportunity to work with (Strikers coach) Darren Berry,” the laidback 31-year-old told cricket.com.au.

“I think we can form a really good bowling unit over there. I think Kane Richardson’s been amazing at the death, so I’m looking forward to working with him and trying to be the best death-bowling team in the BBL.”

Berry too, is excited by the prospect of Laughlin coming on board as part of an increasingly formidable attack.

“Laughlin has been in devastating form for the Hurricanes over the past two seasons, especially with his death bowling spells. He is a dangerous and clever bowler who we feel is a great compliment to our line-up,” he said.

“With Ben Laughlin, Kane Richardson and Michael Neser, we already have a number of bowlers who can take wickets at the important moments, with a number of other key signings still to come.”

The right-armer, whose wickets last season came at the amazing strike rate of 12.8, revels in the chaos of the final overs, while he’s also eager to be lining up alongside some of his new Strikers team-mates.

“It is a good challenge (bowling at the death), guys are coming after you, so it’s always a chance to get wickets and a chance to be in the thick of the action at the end of the game,” he said.

“I’m looking forward to playing with Richo, and Craig Simmons, the new signing – he was amazing last year, some of those innings, I didn’t get the opportunity to bowl at him, which was probably a good thing, but I’m looking forward to see if he can carry on his form for the Strikers.”

Laughlin’s father, Trevor Laughlin, played three Tests and six ODIs for Australia back in 1978-79.

“He’s pretty dirty that (Twenty20) wasn’t around back in the ’70s – he reckons he would’ve been perfect for T20 as a medium-pacer that slogged a big ball,” Laughlin grinned, before adding that his old man’s favourite team “was the Hurricanes, but I’m pretty sure it’s the Strikers now”.

Laughlin, who has also represented Australia – in five ODIs and three T20s – joins Simmons at the Strikers for BBL|04, as well as returning players Kane Richardson, Tim Ludeman, Trent Lawford, Jono Dean, Phil Hughes, Michael Neser and Adam Zampa.