By Rich Jones
Glamorgan new boy Timm van der Gugten is delighted to be having an instant impact at The SSE SWALEC.
The 25-year-old seamer is enjoying his first season in County cricket after being snapped up by the Welsh side over the winter. The Dutch international, who has also played Grade cricket in Australia for New South Wales, Tasmania and Hobart Hurricanes, penned a three-year deal with Glamorgan back in February.
After a tricky start to the season, he hit top form as the season progressed and has repaid the faith shown by head coach Robert Croft to become one of their key bowlers. With the season drawing to a close, Van der Gugten has taken 73 wickets across all three formats, including four five-wicket hauls in the County Championship and a crucial 19 wickets at an average of just 14.11 in the Natwest T20 Blast.
He concedes he has found the sheer volume of cricket a challenge – but he is thrilled to be successfully adapting to the demands of the county cricket schedule.
“I’m loving it here at Glamorgan,” said van der Gugten. “I’ve said it before but it’s a lot of cricket which I’m not used to, but it’s definitely a good difference. “It’s just the volume of cricket which is the big challenge really, and the chopping and changing between formats is very new to me as well. Playing lots of cricket and playing for Glamorgan in front of a great crowd is unreal and I’m enjoying every minute of it.
“It’s going not too bad. It was a bit of a rough start, but a few things have fallen into place and I’ve been on the lucky end in a few games where I’ve got a couple of wickets.
“I think we’ve all played really well as a team which is a bonus, and I’m just pleased things are going well. It’s been a good challenge, so hopefully I can keep improving.”
Van der Gugten, who was brought up in Australia, has also revealed how he is enjoying living in the Welsh capital. “I’m loving Cardiff as a city,” he stated. “It’s a great place, especially recently when we’ve had some nice weather thrown at us for a change!
“There’s a great buzz around the place, especially with the way Wales were doing in the European Championship as well.”
The arrival of van der Gugten has certainly bolstered the bowling options on offer for head coach Croft. He is one of a number of players who have broken into the new-look Glamorgan side and made an instant impact. Their talented young side has reached the quarter-finals of the Natwest T20 Blast – and he believes the positive signs shown in 2016 could be the start of something special for the club.
He commented: “I think we’ve got a few young guys coming through, and if we can gradually introduce them into the first team we can get a good core group who can potentially stick together for years to come. There have been a lot of positive signs for us this season, and if things keep going as they are then Glamorgan will be as strong as ever.”