The heat and noise of the Bangladesh Premier League is far removed from the English county circuit but Luis Reece is hoping his experiences on the sub-continent can help Derbyshire over the coming months.
Reece was rewarded for an impressive Vitality Blast tournament last year by a contract with the Chittagong Vikings which provided the all-rounder with the chance to compete with and against some of the game’s top players.
Although Reece was not given the chance to play in his best position until the end of the tournament in December when he signed off with an unbeaten 80, he stood out with the ball and wants to carry that on in the one-day matches with Derbyshire this summer.
“I thought I was going as a batter,” the 27-year-old said. “I batted three in the T20 last year and it went as well as I could have hoped for – but it turned out they had a different role in mind for me.
“They used me more as a bit of basher towards the end of the innings and someone who bowled – so for the most part my main role in the side was bowling and then facing a couple of overs at the death. That was extremely tricky for someone who is used to facing the new ball up front and making the most of the powerplays.
“So that was a challenge and something I had to learn quite quickly if I wanted to carry on playing in the tournament. I was used in a mixture of roles as a bowler, at the start of the innings, in the middle overs and then at the death which I really enjoyed, it was a good challenge.
“I had the best economy in the Vikings and the third best in the whole tournament so that was a great success for me and gives me a bit of an appetite to take more of a bowling role in the shorter formats for Derbyshire.
“In the last two games I got a go at three and then opening in the last game and finished with 80 odd not out and I got an apology from the coaching staff for not utilising me in the role they perhaps should have done.”
Playing in front of crowds of 40,000 was another part of a learning curve he believes will benefit his development as a cricketer.
“Although you want to showcase your skills throughout the whole tournament, you still take the positives and the learning experiences I got out there,” Reece added.
“You increase your ability to play spin in the nets and in the middle and you’re picking the brains of some of the best players in the world – how they play, how they train and that can only make me better as a cricketer.
“Hopefully I can take some learning aspects I got out there and put them on the park for Derbyshire because that’s my main focus.”
Vitality Blast is back! Derbyshire Falcons host seven Twenty20 games this July and August. Purchase your tickets in advance and save from £4. Buy online or call 01332 388101.