Chawla signs for Surrey
Surrey have pulled off a major signing in their bid to return to top-flight cricket, with the Indian legspinner Piyush Chawla set to move from Hove to The Oval for the 2010 season.
Last season, Chawla, 20, enjoyed an impressive first year on the county circuit, claiming 36 wickets for Sussex in first-class cricket at an average of 27.25, including a haul of 6 for 152 against Worcestershire, in a match in which he also scored 102 not out from 86 balls. In his second game he took impressive match figures of 11 for 170 against Somerset.
He also featured in two Test and 21 ODIs, taking 31 wickets, and when he returned to the county in September, Chawla dismissed England's Ian Bell and Jonathan Trott during Warwickshire's visit to Hove, before claiming match figures of 9 for 249 off 87 overs against Yorkshire. His final matches for Sussex were in the ongoing Champions League Twenty20 against New South Wales and Diamond Eagles.
Chawla will join up with Surrey at the conclusion of the Indian Premier League, in which he represents the Kings XI Punjab and has claimed 29 wickets at 24.03 to date. He is Surrey's third signing of the winter, with England Internationals Steven Davies and Gareth Batty both joining the club from Worcestershire.
"There were two clear objectives in picking our overseas signing for next season," said Surrey's cricket manager, Chris Adams. "I wanted the player to be of true international class and I wanted them to be able to commit to spending the vast majority of their season with us - Piyush fulfills both requirements handsomely.
"There is a fine spin tradition at Surrey which runs from Jim Laker and Tony Lock to Ian Salisbury, Harbhajan Singh and Saqlain Mushtaq, and I hope our latest arrival will one day take his place alongside those names."
Managing Director of Surrey Cricket Gus Mackay added: "After the problems we have suffered in the past I am very pleased we can announce the signing of a world-class overseas player so early in our pre-season schedule. The knowledge of this signing will bring a solidity to our preparations that can only be highly beneficial."
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