Kemar Roach may not be a name familiar to many Birmingham League batsmen or Worcestershire supporters, but all that could have changed by the end of next summer.
The 19-year-old Bajan has agreed to play as an overseas player for Ombersley this year, when he will be monitored by Worcestershire with an eye to a future in county cricket.
Worcestershire coach Steve Rhodes came across Roach in Barbados earlier this winter. Impressed by the natural pace and athleticism of a fast bowler in the Fidel Edwards mould, Rhodes helped arrange the deal and is expected to include him in the Worcestershire second XI in 2008 when possible.
Rhodes is not the only person impressed by Roach. Judges as shrewd as Joel Garner, one of the finest fast bowlers Barbados has produced, have been equally excited.
Roach was a surprise inclusion in a 26-man West Indies training squad recently. He has played only two first-class and three List A matches but is blessed with extreme pace and has recently been taking the new ball for Barbados.
It is unlikely that Roach will graduate to Worcestershire's first team in the short term. Though the club are narrowing down the candidates in their search for an over-seas fast bowler, a more experienced performer is required.
Shane Bond has emerged as a possible, though unlikely, candidate for the role. The New Zealander is, in theory, available all season.
His commitments with the 'rebel' Indian Cricket League finish on April 6 and his agent is actively touting him. His dire history with injuries is a major factor, however, and Worcestershire have not yet made contact. Hampshire are also thought to be pursuing Bond on a short-term contract that might be more appropriate.
An Australian seam bowler remains Worcestershire's more likely choice, though Bond could do a sterling job over a short period.
Meanwhile, Worcestershire have also given a trial to Rebak Mahmood, the 20-year-old brother of England and Lancashire's Sajid. It is thought unlikely that he will be offered a contract, however.