Wicketkeeper Cross joins county for rest of the season

Derbyshire have eased their wicketkeeping dilemma with the signing of Gareth Cross until the end of the season.

The club moved quickly to secure the signature of the former Lancashire man following Tom Poynton’s injury setback and the current unavailability of Richard Johnson.

Johnson remains unavailable for selection in order to focus on recovering from sports performance anxiety issues which caused him to miss the recent LV= County Championship match versus Worcestershire through illness.

Lancashire Academy graduate Cross made his first-class debut for the Red Rose County in 2005 and went on to feature in 62 first-class matches, hitting 2,196 runs including three centuries.

The 29-year-old was a member of the Lancashire side that clinched the LV= County Championship Division One title in 2011, hitting 611 runs including a career-best 125 against Sussex.

Cross was also a regular in Lancashire’s limited-overs sides, featuring in 80 List A matches and 87 T20 fixtures, scoring just shy of 2,000 runs.

Following his departure from Lancashire at the end of last season, Cross has played Second XI cricket for Derbyshire on a non-contract basis during the opening weeks of the 2014 campaign.

Elite Performance Director Graeme Welch said: ““Gareth is an experienced wicketkeeper-batsman and we are delighted to have him at the club. He’s a very good batsman who can score quickly. He’s also very tidy with the gloves and his attitude during the trial period with our seconds has been top drawer.”

Cross added: “This opportunity has come up and I have really enjoyed being around the lads. I’m really excited about getting started here at Derbyshire.

“I spoke to my former Lancashire teammate Stephen Moore before I signed and he said it’s a really exciting time at the club.

“I’m happy to be here, now it’s up to me to play well and to help the side win cricket matches in all three competitions.”

Short-term loanee Dan Hodgson has returned to Yorkshire following one appearance.