Normandy has pulled off a coup with the signing of Australian State and BBL star Harry Nielsen for their 2023 Surrey Championship campaign.
Nielsen is an exceptionally talented wicket-keeper batter playing for South Australia and the Adelaide Strikers.
Son of former SACA legend and Australian Head Coach, Tim Nielsen, the prodigy has played almost 100 matches across the three formats to date and boasts impressive numbers. At the point of writing (16/02/23), Nielsen averages 29.27 (FC), 28.26 (List A), and 21.05 (T20), including a century (105) on his Sheffield Shield debut, and two further hundreds (110, 114).
Nielsen earned his State call-up following his exploits for Woodville Cricket Club (4,271 runs at 39.92 heading into the 2022/23 season) in SACA Grade Cricket and for the Redbacks in the Futures League. He struck 2 centuries amongst 406 runs at 45.11 during the 2016/17 season, alongside Grade tally’s of 954 runs at 45.11 (2016/17), 848 runs at 45.11 (2017/18), 539 runs at 44.92 (2018/19), 440 runs at 40 (2019/20), and 43 in his only innings in 2020/21.
He was upgraded from a rookie to full State contract in 2017/18 and turned out for the Cricket Australia XI squad in the JLT One-Day Comp, topping the side’s batting averages. Nielsen was added to the Adelaide Strikers squad for their semi-final match but was released due to Alex Carey’s return for the BBL final.
Over the past few years, Nielsen has been a Cricket Australia XI regular, hitting a notable 43 from 40 balls against the touring Indians. He then kept wicket for the South Africans, as Quinton de Kock’s replacement, against Cricket Australia XI, before earning his Redbacks contract. In 2019/20, Nielsen cemented his spot in Sheffield Shield cricket, hitting 3 half-centuries amongst 330 runs at 30 to include a match-winning 86 not out to help SA over the line against Tasmania.
However, in his 2021/22 season he produced his best season to date, hitting centuries in both first-class (114) and List A (110) cricket, amongst a season tally of 503 runs at 35.91 (FC), and 197 runs at 39.40 (List A). He has since backed up with 265 runs at 29.44 (2021/22), and 185 runs at 30.83 (2022/23) in State cricket, including some crucial knocks in recent times.
Nielsen, who has become the key gloveman for both South Australia and the Strikers, is now set on a UK return in 2023, having previously spent two seasons in Yorkshire for Ilkley in the Airedale and Wharfedale Senior League (2013-14 – 1,030 runs at 34.33), then a brief stint in 2019 with Cuckfield in the Sussex Premier League (321 runs at 40.13).
Holder of a British Passport, the Redbacks, and Strikers star has signed with Normandy for their 2023 Surrey Championship (Premier Division) campaign.