Former Gosport Borough cricketer Chris Lynn will rub shoulders with the biggest names in the sport after being signed up at the Indian Premier League auction.
The Australian batsman, who spent a season at Privett Park in 2008, will link up with Kevin Pietersen, Michael Lumb, Dale Steyn, Dan Christian, Cameron White, JP Duminy and Kumar Sangakkara in the star-studded Deccan Chargers ranks for the forthcoming high-profile t20 tournament.
While team-mate and South African fast bowler Steyn fetched a mammoth fee of 1.2m US dollars, Lynn was rather more inexpensive at just 20,000 USD.
But there were plenty of players who were left unsold at the auction, including big names such as James Anderson, Graeme Swann, Chris Gayle and Sourav Ganguly.
Lynn – the former Queensland under-19 skipper – scored 754 runs during his spell in the Southern Electric Premier League and was the third-highest run-scorer across all three divisions.
He hammered six 50s and two centuries – including a top score of 136 not out – during a prolific 2008 campaign.
And long-serving club stalwart Pete Robson, who played alongside Lynn, believes Gosport can take a small share of reflected glory from the Queenslander's progress.
Robson joked: 'We like to think that Chris came through the Gosport finishing school of how not to play cricket.
'But perhaps we might have played a very small part in his cricketing education.
'We had Trevor Jesty play for us and he went on to play one-day cricket for England, and it's a source of great pride when anyone goes on from representing the club to win honours.
'Chris was fantastic in that year he played for us.
'He was a fine batsman, took 20 wickets for us and was awesome in the field as well.
'He was a level-headed young man who could win a game for you.
'Chris thoroughly enjoyed his time with us.
'He took his cricket seriously but he was great to have around the club. He is a really nice young man.'
Robson recalled a game against South Wilts when the usual age roles were reversed as Gosport secured victory.
He said: 'I remember we were playing a game up at South Wilts and I came in to bat with Chris late on when wickets were tumbling.
'We were running every single we could. I was totally out of breath and he called me to the middle and said "just take a breather, Robbo".
'We had a chat and I asked him what we was planning and he said "I'll just win the game for you" – and he did.
'He was an 18-year-old kid, he was cool as you like and I was 46 at the time so I suppose it should have been me being the experienced old head. It was the total opposite!
'But it's great for a club like ours to see one of our former players going on to do well for himself. We're all hoping that he will go on to play Test cricket for Australia in the future.'