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Michael Clarke close to signing USD 1 mn bat deal

Three days after an epic 329 not out, with a bat that didn't have a sponsor's logo, against India at the historic Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG), Australian captain Michael Clarke finds himself close to signing a USD 1 million deal with a bat sponsor.

Clarke is set to sign a three-year contract with bat manufacturer Spartan Sports and is likely to have a new logo on his willow by the time he comes to the crease in the Perth Test beginning Friday.

The Sydney Morning Herald Sunday reported that Clarke has agreed on a deal with Spartan, which is into sporting goods business. The 30-year-old batsman ended his 18-year association with another bat maker Slazenger days before he led Australia to an innings and 68-run win over India in the Sydney Test.

The report further said that the bat will sport the "MC" logo named after the Australian skipper.

Former Test cricketer Ian David, who is a consultant at Spartan, said they are keen closing the deal with Clarke at the earliest.

"We are very keen, we are talking with them (Clarke's management) and hoping to get it over the line ASAP. Michael has always been a really good cricketer... and it would be fantastic for us to have him as an ambassador," said David.

Clarke has become the seventh Australian batsman to score a triple-century after Matthew Hayden (380), Don Bradman (334 and 304), Mark Taylor (334 not out), Bob Simpson (311) and Bob Cowper (307).

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