Mohammad Amir has signed as overseas player for Essex for the second half of the 2017 season.
Amir, the Pakistan left-arm swing bowler, is expected to be available from the end of the Champions Trophy in mid-June. Essex hope he will help them adjust to life in Division One of the County Championship - they were promoted at the end of 2016 - and Amir, who married recently, now has family in the London area.
Essex had been in particular need of pace-bowling reinforcements, after the retirements of Graham Napier - their leading wicket-taker in 2016 - and David Masters. The attack is likely to be led by Jamie Porter, 23, who has only played two full seasons of Championship cricket.
Chris Silverwood, Essex coach, said: "We are thrilled that Mohammad has decided to join us for half of the 2017 campaign. He showed a real desire to be a part of the Club and the fact we have him for two competitions is a real bonus. He is still only young but has proved himself at International level already, so it is a real coup to get this signing completed."
Amir returned to Test cricket in England earlier this year, having served a five-year suspension for spot-fixing. He took 12 wickets in the series against England, but often bowled better than his final tally suggested, as he confirmed that his lengthy ban had not unduly undermined his potential.
"I am very excited about becoming part of the Essex family," Amir said. "Chris Silverwood and Ronnie Irani have both been very supportive over the summer. I'm hoping I can carry on Essex's success this season and achieve more for the club in 2017."