The New Zealand national team’s opening batsman Martin Guptill was released from his contract in New Zealand and immediately signed by Melbourne Renegades ahead of Big Bash League (BBL) 12 season.
Guptill is the latest New Zealand cricketer to be released from his national contract in order to play in the BBL after the Melbourne Stars drafted Trent Boult in August’s overseas player draft.
Guptill, like Boult, has not left New Zealand cricket, but he has decided against signing a contract so that he can play more freely in Twenty20 franchise competitions.
He’ll be joining Renegades in place of Liam Livingstone, who had to withdraw from the tournament after getting called up to the England Test squad. When it came to international selection, Livingstone was the first overall pick.
On December 28th, Guptill will return to action for the final ten games of the regular season. Andre Russell will start the first four games of the season in place of Livingstone.
The New Zealand batter is eager to make his BBL debut and views his upcoming task as a welcome challenge.
“I’m excited to join the Renegades for Big Bash. I’m excited to spend the summer in Melbourne. Making as many runs as possible will help the Renegades climb the standings. I’ve seen some of the men in international competitions, so I know it’ll be fun and supportive. I can’t wait to play in front of all the Renegades fans at Marvel Stadium [Docklands] and in Geelong,” Guptill said.
New Zealand's all-time leading T20I run-scorer is a Renegade 😤
— Melbourne Renegades (@RenegadesBBL) November 24, 2022
Guptill played for Sydney Thunder in the 2012 Sydney Derby.
Martin’s decision to join the Renegades is exciting. Martin’s record in New Zealand and domestic competitions throughout the world speaks for itself. It would be exciting to see what Martin can do in red with his experience and knowledge.
“This past month, our club has benefited greatly from the signings of Martin and Andre. Having a world-class player available for the entirety of the tournament, with Andre playing the first four matches and Martin joining us from there, will help give us every chance of success in BBL 12,” he added.