Middlesex sign Pakistan's Shaheen Shah Afridi ahead of 2022 season
- Credit: PA
Middlesex have announced that Pakistan international pace bowler Shaheen Shah Afridi will join the Club for the 2022 season.
Left-arm quick, Afridi, 21, will join up with the Middlesex squad in pre-season ahead of the start of the 2022 season, and will remain at Middlesex until he joins up with Pakistan for international duty in mid-July.
He will be available to represent the Club in County Championship cricket to that point and for the entirety of the 2022 Vitality Blast campaign, including the knockout stages of the tournament should Middlesex qualify.
Afridi already has 19 Test appearances for Pakistan to his name, along with 59 international white-ball caps.
In Test cricket he has taken five wickets in an innings on three occasions and has one ten wicket match haul, picked up against the West Indies just six weeks ago when taking 10 for 93 at Sabina Park.
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His best international return in white-ball cricket came at Lord’s, when taking 6 for 35 against Bangladesh in the 2019 World Cup.
He stands at an imposing 6 feet 6 inches tall and uses his height and pace to great advantage, extracting bounce from the most docile of tracks, hits a consistent good length, and possesses a lethal yorker within his armoury.
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Middlesex members and fans will remember all too well how destructive he can be, when he picked up six wickets for Hampshire in the club’s final Vitality Blast match of 2020, taking four wickets in four deliveries in a quite phenomenal spell of bowling.
Speaking of the signing of Afridi, Middlesex’s Chief Executive, Andrew Cornish, said: “We are absolutely delighted to have secured the services of one of international crickets’ most exciting talents. Shaheen is a world-class pace bowler, and we are thrilled that he will be representing us in 2022.
“His signature was highly sought-after, and the fact that he has chosen to join Middlesex is a massive coup for us as a Club and speaks volumes of our ambitions.
“We need Middlesex to be competing at the top level and challenging for trophies. Signing players of Shaheen’s calibre, who can add quality and experience to our existing squad, is a significant step towards us getting there.
“Shaheen is a genuine match winner and I’m sure all our members will be excited to welcome him to Middlesex and share in our delight that he will be wearing the three Seaxes of the Club on his chest next season.”
On joining Middlesex, Shaheen Shah Afridi said: “I am very excited to be playing for Middlesex next season. I know from my time in England they are a great county and to play at the Home of Cricket really will be a dream come true.
"I am looking forward to being part of the team and helping create a wonderful season for the club.”