Hampshire have beaten off competition from several other counties to complete the signing of former Kent captain Sam Northeast.

The 28 year-old is expected to replace captain George Bailey at number four after more than a decade with his home county.

Northeast, arguably Hampshire’s biggest signing since Kevin Pietersen, made the decision to leave Kent after being replaced as captain by Sam Billings.

His move to the Ageas Bowl means he will be playing in the County Championship’s first division, giving him a much better chance of breaking into the England Test team.

He will be playing alongside former England U19 teammates James Vince, Liam Dawson and Cheris Wood.

Hampshire, whose interest in Northeast was revealed by the Daily Echo a month ago, are expected to confirm the signing early next week.