Papatoetoe and Auckland's loss will be Manukau and Counties Manukau's gain as one of the country's premier young leg spinners, Ish Sodhi, switches loyalties for the chance to play first class cricket for Northern Districts.
The move has been confirmed by his manager Shane Singe, who has mentored, captained and coached Sodhi at Papatoetoe since he was a junior.
He says Sodhi will hook up with the Manukau Cricket Club when he gets back from the under-19 cricket world cup in Queensland later this month.
"It's simple. Ish is looking for opportunities to play first class cricket and develop his game," Singe says.
"His opportunities in Auckland are limited with Bhupinder Singh (Papatoetoe) and Bruce Martin being the first choice spinners.
"There is an opportunity for him at Northern Districts. They already have a young spinner in their squad but are looking at the option of a leg spinner.
"He is really looking forward to the opportunity."
Singe says Sodhi wants to play for New Zealand one day and his move to Northern Districts is part of that journey.
He will be a massive loss for Papatoetoe, Singe says.
"He doesn't really want to go but he realises he has to if he wants to develop his game."
Sodhi was Papatoetoe's top wicket-taker last season with 43 wickets. He is also a handy middle order batsman.
Manukau captain Brendon Read says he's thrilled to have someone of Sodhi's potential at the club.
"We all pretty happy about it," he says.
"He brings plenty of experience and complements our bowling attack. There will be plenty of competition among our bowlers now. They can't afford to have too many off days," he says.
Manukau has two off spinners in Ivan Burrows and Anthony Niterl and a leg spinner in all-rounder Jono Hickey.
- © Fairfax NZ News