Ramnaresh Sarwan, the former West Indies captain, has signed as Leicestershire's overseas player for the 2012 season. He will join the county for the entire season, subject to gaining clearance from the West Indian Cricket Board and a UK work permit. He will be a part of Leicestershire's pre-season tour of Barbados in mid-March, before flying to the UK.

Sarwan has not been a part of the West Indies setup since the home series against India in June 2011, and has not played any cricket since then due to confusion over his fitness. The Guyana Cricket Board left Sarwan out of their squad for the Caribbean T20, saying they were unsure of his fitness, but Sarwan criticised the board, saying he was fit and had informed the board of that. Sarwan has also had his differences with the WICB in the past.

Leicestershire have had Australia allrounder Andrew McDonald as their overseas player in the Championship at various stages of the past two seasons, but McDonald has not played for Australia since 2009 and hence cannot get a work permit to play in England. Sarwan, who has previously played for Gloucestershire, will be his replacement.

"We are delighted to have completed the signing of Ramnaresh Sarwan," Leicestershire chief-executive Mike Siddall said. "He has an impressive Test record and his availability to play all forms of the game for us during the 2012 season is an added bonus. We wanted to sign an experienced overseas batsman and Ronnie certainly fits the bill."

Sarwan has played 87 Tests and has scored 5842 runs at 40.01.