CAPTAIN Dane Vilas is throwing his lot in with Lancashire.

The Red Rose’s South African wicketkeeper-batsman plans to settle in the county along with his young family from now onwards.

Vilas is in his third year as a Kolpak player at Old Trafford and has not signed a contract to play a full campaign of domestic cricket in his homeland with the Durban-based Dolphins franchise this coming winter.

It is likely, however, the 33-year-old will continue as the Twenty20 skipper of the Jozi Stars, whom he led to the inaugural Mzansi Super League title in December.

As Vilas played a full season in South Africa, his wife Pippa - a qualified lawyer with a UK ancestral visa through her grandfather - and their two children spent the most recent winter in Manchester.

“My family’s here now, so we are going to be based in England," he said.

“To be away from them for that period of time again would be difficult for them and me.

“And I really want to focus on being here now, playing for Lancashire for as long as I can.

“Right from the word go, Lancashire welcomed me in and made things so easy.

“I remember Glen Chapple picking me up at the train station when I got in. Those small things go a long way.

“I always wanted to come over here and play county cricket, and to come to a great club like this and a great place in Manchester was a dream come true."

Vilas, capped seven times across Test and Twenty20 by South Africa between 2012 and 2016, arrived at Lancashire ahead of 2017, and he has impressed, passing 100 on seven occasions in Championship and 50-over cricket.

“I had heard some great stories before I arrived. South Africans have always had an affinity with Lancashire," he said.

“I’ve also known about the strength of the Lancashire Leagues.

“I didn’t play any league cricket here before arriving, but when South African guys did, they always said: ‘Lancashire is the place you want to play because it’s the most competitive’.

“I helped out at Darwen last year when a mate of mine, Calvin Savage, had to go back home. It’s also Al Davies’ club.”