County news September 19, 2007

Surrey sign Usman Afzaal on three-year deal

Cricinfo staff

Surrey have signed Usman Afzaal on a three-year contract. Ufzaal, 30, left Northamptonshire by mutual consent last week.

Afzaal started his career at Nottinghamshire, making three England appearances during the 2001 Ashes. He moved to Northamptonshire in 2004 where he was consistent, and this season he scored 570 runs at 35.62 in eight Championship matches.

"I want to continue to learn more about myself and my game and feel a new challenge, in a new environment will help me achieve this," Afzaal said. "To learn from and play with the likes of Alan and Mark Butcher and Mark Ramprakash will be an honour and something I'm looking forward to.

"My dream is to play more cricket for England and I see this move to Surrey - where I will be under pressure to prove myself in a quality side - as a stepping stone to being recognised by the English selectors once more."

Alan Butcher, Surrey's cricket manager, welcomed the addition to his squad. "With some of our top batsmen nearing the end of their careers, it was important for us to acquire a proven and experienced player approaching his prime. I believe Usman to be ambitious, both for himself and for the club and think that he has vital parts to play as the rebuilding of the team continues."