LONGPARISH batsman Will de Cani has flown to Australia to spend the winter playing for Melbourne side South Yarra.

De Cani’s 653 runs this summer contained centuries against champions Portsmouth & Southsea (141) and Bishops Waltham (101 not out), helping the promoted Test Valley village club finish third in County 1.

De Cani, 22, said: “This is a great learning opportunity for me to play on different surfaces, besides spending what is certain to be a hectic six-months in Melbourne, which becomes the sporting capital of the world in our winter.”

The 22-year old, who hopes to put his First Class BSc degree in city and regional planning from Cardiff University to practical use during his six months in Australia, would probably have won a second consecutive HCL divisional batting award had Parish’s match at relegated Sarisbury Athletic not been washed out. He was the County Division 2 batting award winner last year.