Keith Barker relishing Hampshire challenge

Keith Barker celebrates Warwickshire's County Championship title in 2012 with former Hampshire youngster Chris Wright, who will join Leicestershire next season
Keith Barker celebrates Warwickshire's County Championship title in 2012 with former Hampshire youngster Chris Wright, who will join Leicestershire next season
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Keith Barker is relishing a new challenge at Hampshire after it was revealed he has signed a two-year deal at the Ageas Bowl.

The Warwickshire left-armer will arrive on the south coast next season.

And having helped the Bears to the County Championship division two title this summer, the 31-year-old is excited for the future.

Barker said: ‘I am very excited to be taking on a new challenge at Hampshire.

‘But I would like to thank everyone at Warwickshire who has helped me along the way, especially Graeme Welch who made a big difference to my bowling early in my career.’

Barker, a former Lancashire colt, has been at Edgbaston since calling time on his football career in 2009.

He had spells at Blackburn Rovers, Cercle Bruges, Rochdale and Northwich Victoria before switching to cricket full-time.

Since then the seam bowler has taken 359 first-class wickets at an average of 25.40 for Warwickshire.

He also has 3,554 runs, including six centuries, at an average of 28.43.

That tally has included 56 in the Bears’ County Championship triumph in 2012 and then 62 in 2016.

This season Barker has claimed 40 wickets in Warwickshire’s charge to the top tier.