July 23 2014 Latest news:

Vauxhall Mallards pace bowler Olly Stone has signed a two-year professional contract with Northamptonshire.

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The 18-year-old, who made his Norfolk debut last summer, played his first First Class match for Northants earlier this season when he featured in the County Championship match against Yorkshire at Headingley. He has also played three Clydesdale Bank 40 matches and three Twenty20 games for the Steelbacks this year, after first appearing for the county in a Twenty20 match last July.

Stone, pictured, a former Thorpe St Andrew High School pupil, told the Northants website: “It is great news for me and I was very happy to accept the contract offer from Northants.

“I never expected my season to go as well as it has, and I’m glad to have been given the opportunity to show what I can do for the club.

“I had a fantastic winter after coming back from injury, and that has carried me into this season. The support I have received from everyone here at the County Ground has been fantastic. I can only hope to continue my progress and help Northants be competitive in all forms of the game going forward.”

Northants’ interim head coach David Ripley, who has overseen Stone’s progress through the county’s academy, said: “We are very pleased Olly has signed. Olly has been with Northants since he was 13, and we have seen him develop as a person and as a cricketer.

“He bounced back from a stress fracture and has been absolutely fantastic this season.

“The support staff have helped him along the way but Olly deserves this contract after all of his hard work.”

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