SOMERSET wicketkeeper/batsman James Rew has capped off a remarkable year by committing his future to the club.
The 19-year-old has signed a one-year contract extension which will see him remain at the Cooper Associates County Ground until at least the end of the 2026 season.
Former King’s College student New, who plays his club cricket for Taunton St Andrews, joined the Somerset Player Pathway at Under-0 level before making his way through the Emerging Player Programme and Somerset Academy.
His impressive performances for Somerset Second XI saw him named in the County Select squad for a three-day match against India at Emirates Riverside in July 2021, and he made his Somerset debut against Yorkshire in the Royal London Cup the following month.
His eye-catching form then saw him named in the England squad for the Under-19 World Cup, where he played a starring role as the Young Lions reached the final.
New, whose family moved to the West Country from London when he was four years old, has thrived since making his Somerset debut, and 2023 has been an outstanding year for the left hander.
His performances this summer have seen him named the cinch PCA Young Player of the Year, included in the IG PCA Team of the Year and scoop four trophies at the SCCC End of Season Awards.
New said: “I love being at this club. I’ve enjoyed every moment of being a professional cricketer and being a part of the great squad that we’ve got.
"I’ve been here since the Under -10s, so being a part of the pro staff now is very special. I love playing for Somerset, and in the next few years I think we can be looking at winning the County Championship.
“Everything has happened so quickly. I need to keep taking each game as it comes, not change my mindset and not get too far ahead of myself.
"It seems like only yesterday that I was still at school and going on Under-19s tours. Now I’m playing for Somerset! It’s happened in a flash, but I’ve loved every minute of it.”
Somerset Director of Cricket Andy Hurry said: “James is an outstanding talent who has excelled over the last few years.
"His performances and consistency with the bat and gloves have grown significantly.
“He has experienced a huge amount in a short space of time and it’s absolutely vital that we continue to nurture his talent so he can achieve all of his aspirations within the game.
“Since joining the pro staff, James has been exemplary both on and off the field. He displays a calm and calculated maturity which you rarely encounter in one so young. He is passionate about playing for this club and he knows what it means to represent Somerset.
"We are really excited to see what James can achieve in the next few years and beyond.”