World No.1 Holder has done his homework as he bids to star for Northants

You might think Jason Holder didn't know anything about Northants before agreeing to join them ahead of the start of the new season - but that is not the case, says the world's No.1 Test all-rounder.

Jason Holder spoke to the media in Northampton on Wednesday
Jason Holder spoke to the media in Northampton on Wednesday

"I did know they were a pretty good white-ball side," said Holder, who arrived in Northampton on Tuesday. "I watched them when they won the T20 finals a few years back and it was good to see that.

"I've met a few of the guys already and I've played against a few of them as well.

"Nathan Buck and I played in the Youth World Cup, I played against Richard Levi a few years back and I know Rory Kleinveldt, who was a big member of the squad here last year.

"I did have one or two chats with Rory leading up to my move here so there are one or two guys I know.

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"I'm looking forward to being part of it and hopefully I can leave a good mark here and help the guys as much as I can."

So how did Holder's move come about?

"I began negotiations after the IPL auction because I was unsold and I would rather be playing cricket than being sat at home doing nothing," explained the 27-year-old, who has signed on at Northants for the opening two Championship games and the first six Royal London One-Day Cup matches.

"This opportunity came up and it was a situation where I could come over and get myself properly prepared for the World Cup ahead."

But before the start of the World Cup, which will be hosted by England and Wales from May 30 to July 14, Holder is desperate to make a big impression at Northants.

And it all begins with a home fixture against Middlesex, starting on Friday.

"I'm really excited for the start of the season," Holder said.

"It's my first time playing county cricket and it's been a childhood dream to come over and play.

"I'm really excited to get my feet under the table and hopefully propel the team to one or two early-season wins.

"I'm really excited to be here in the capacity of both a batter and bowler.

"I've got to get some wickets and that's the primary goal for me.

"Hopefully I can add a bit of value to what the team is looking for.

"I'm really looking forward to the start of a new campaign.

"I can't wait to get going against Middlesex on Friday and I'm sure it will be a really good game.

"I just need to execute whatever my plans are and win games for this cricket team."