Shaheen Shah Afridi joins Middlesex for 2022 season
Fast bowler will be available for Championship and Blast fixtures until July
Shaheen Shah Afridi, the Pakistan left-arm fast bowler, has signed for Middlesex for the 2022 season.
Afridi, 21, will join up with the Middlesex squad for pre-season training in the spring, and will remain with the club until mid-July, when Pakistan's tour of Sri Lanka is due to take place. In that time, he will be available for County Championship fixtures as well as the entirety of the Vitality Blast campaign, including the knockout stages of the tournament should Middlesex qualify.
"I am very excited to be playing for Middlesex next season," Afridi said. "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."
Afridi has played 19 Tests for Pakistan, claiming 76 wickets at 25.25 including three five-wicket hauls, and a best match performance of 10 for 93, against West Indies at Sabina Park six weeks ago.
He has also featured in 28 ODIs and 30 T20Is, and starred for Pakistan at Middlesex's home ground of Lord's during the 2019 World Cup, when he took 6 for 35 against Bangladesh.
Afridi's previous experience of county cricket came for Hampshire in 2020, when Middlesex were his victims in a stunning final outing of that season's Vitality Blast, as he returned figures of 6 for 19 in his four overs, including four wickets in four balls to seal a 20-run victory.
"We are absolutely delighted to have secured the services of one of international crickets' most exciting talents," Andrew Cornish, Middlesex's chief executive, said. "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."